Health Service Excellence Awards 2016

Winner Announced at the 2016 Health Service Excellence Awards

Health Service Excellence Awards: Ophthalmology Project is a Clear Winner

The award for Overall Best Project was presented to the Ophthalmology Service being delivered by Sligo University Hospital and Sligo, Leitrim and West Cavan Community Health Organisation. The Ophthalmology Service in Sligo University Hospital joined forces with colleagues working in the community to create an improved model of care for patients.

"The Health Service Excellence Awards 2016 are designed to identify, recognise the real value we place on excellence and innovation across all of our health service. The Awards process enabled us to identify great service developments that can be shared and implemented, as appropriate, in different parts of our health system", Tony O'Brien, DG of the HSE.

Seven projects were selected to compete to be the Overall Winner of the 2016 Health Service Excellence Awards. Teams representing the final seven projects attended today’s Awards Ceremony in Farmleigh House in the Phoenix Park, Dublin.  The final seven projects were selected from an original entry of 426 projects.  They were chosen by the Selection Panel after 39 projects were invited to make presentations detailing their projects aims and objectives.

The Health Service Excellence Awards took place on Wednesday 27th April 2016 in Dublin. The Awards are designed to encourage and inspire our healthcare staff to develop better services that result in easier access and high quality care for patients and to promote pride among staff in relation to our services. Director General of the HSE, Tony O’Brien, presented the awards.

He continued: “The Awards are not simply about those projects selected as being winners and finalists but about all of those that have been submitted and are contributing to the continuous improvement of health and social care services. The on-going commitment of staff throughout the public health service contributes in a very significant way to the quality and satisfaction levels acknowledged by our service users and the members of the public.  The Health Service Excellence Awards afford us the opportunity to take pride in our services, recognise and celebrate staff commitment and dedication and to say thank you to our staff for their contribution to the provision of health and social care services.

The Runner Up Award was presented to the National Clinical Programme for Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS) which was initiated in 2010 to save lives by standardising the care of ACS patients across the country as a joint venture between the Irish Cardiac Society (under the auspices of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) and the HSE.

The Popular Choice Award, decided by an online poll for healthcare staff, was presented to the Community Epilepsy Outreach Service operated by the South/South West Hospitals Group and Community Healthcare Organisation for Cork and Kerry. The service succeeded in transforming the quality of epilepsy care for service users through a radical redesign of the model of care.

The top seven projects who went through to the Awards Ceremony were as follows:

Watch Project Videos and Read Summaries
Community Epilepsy Outreach Service SSWHG/CHO4
'Start Smart' - Improving the quality of empiric antimicrobial prescribing at Temple Street Children's University Hospital
Little Things (joint submission from Mental Health Division and Communication Division)
A Community virtual ward to support older persons within the community with complex health and social care needs
Family Summer Wheelchair Camps
National Clinical Programme for Acute Coronary Syndrome
Having the right people with the right skills in the right place, at the right time - Sligo University Hospital (SUH)/ Sligo Leitrim West Cavan CHO Ophthalmology

Highly Commended

In addition to the final seven projects another seven projects have been Highly Commended by the Selection Panel. Although these projects did not make the final seven the Selection Panel felt they were of such a high standard that they deserved to be Highly Commended.  These projects are as follows:

Transition to Secondary School Group (for children attending SAT or CAMHS services)


CHO Area 8

National Integrated Medical Imaging System (NIMIS)

Office of the Chief Information Officer (OoCIO) Health Business Services


Community Medicine for Older Persons Nursing Home Liaison Service

Ireland East Hospital Group

Donegal Social Prescribing for Health and Wellbeing


CHO Area 1

Stroke Rehabilitation and Recovery – collaborative efforts of HSE and CSSG improving patients outcomes


South /South West Hospitals Group

Partnership for Health Equity (PHE) Clinics in Limerick City


CHO Area 3

Bringing Methadone Treatment to Homeless People



Addiction Services For Homeless People

A special Irish Independent supplement on the award nominees was also published.

Thank you to all of those who have entered for the 2016 Health Service Excellence Awards. The closing date for applications was Wednesday, January 13, 2016.

The Awards have been created to allow those who have been involved in a project or service that has made a real and lasting impression on our health and social services to highlight their achievements.

We asked you to tell us about the achievements of you and your team colleagues at work.  These Awards are a great opportunity to showcase your successes.

The aim of the Health Service Excellence Awards is to encourage and inspire people to develop better services that result in easier access and high quality care for patients and to promote pride among staff in relation to our services. 

The Awards are open to all staff working in the public health system directly run or funded by the HSE. These may include any service provided directly to the public including clinical services, primary care or social / family support; support services including catering, portering, security, clerical and management to include people management processes, information technology or service management initiatives.

You can contact the Awards team by emailing

If you need additional help or support contact one of the Awards Co-ordinators (see list and contact email below)

Health Service Excellence Awards Criteria Excellence Awards 2015

The criteria for the 2016 Health Service Excellence Awards competition is as follows:

HSE Values: the extent to which HSE values are demonstrated & evident: Care, Compassion, Trust & Learning

Integration: will assess the extent to which your project supports healthcare workers regardless of whether they are hospital or community based, to work together in teams, planning and delivering care seamlessly.  Your project should show evidence of enabling and encouraging this integrated way of working

Experience: will assess the evidence that the project has addressed and impacted on quality of service, patient/service user safety, and care. It will also assess compliance with Health and Safety Legislation. Projects should clearly identify improvements that have been achieved for patient experience, quality of care and patient safety

Engagement: will assess the degree to which the project has created channels that ensure involvement or consultation with input from all relevant stakeholders, including patients/service users, staff, unions and partnership processes. Finally, it will assess the method and types of tools used to communicate with both external and internal customers throughout the duration of the project

Transferability: will assess the potential for the learning from the project to be replicated to other parts of the health services. This may include, but is not limited to, the overall approach, specific features or specific outcomes of the project

Efficiency & Value for Money: will assess how the project has created a more streamlined approach to service delivery and delivered increased efficiencies/resource savings

Diversity, Equality & Inclusion: The HSE is committed to creating a setting whereby all employees of differing race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, responsibilities for dependents, age, physical or mental disability, membership of the Traveller community or geographic location are respected, valued and can reach their full potential. We aim to develop the workforce of the HSE which reflects the diversity of Irish society, and which is strengthened through accommodating and valuing different perspectives. Projects which reflect practical initiatives in supporting the HSE's Diversity, Equality and Inclusion statement are welcomed and should demonstrate components of this statement

Measurement and Results:  will assess how the project measures the change / innovation within their service as a result of their project.  Please include details of quality improvement measurement tools used and results captured.

Unique Features : will allow applicants to highlight unique features of their project that may fall outside the other criteria.  Health based projects with specific measurable outcomes

How does the Selection Process Work? Excellence Awards 2015

Applications will be shortlisted by a Shortlisting panel comprised of the Co-ordinators,CHO (Community Healthcare Organisation) personnel, Hospital Group personnel and the Selection Panel. 

Shortlisting will take place in January 2016 and teams from the shortlisted projects will then be invited to present to the Selection Panel. 

A number of projects will be further shortlisted to qualify for the Health Service Excellence Awards Final 2016.  The Health Service Excellence Awards Final will be held in April 2016. The Overall Winner will be selected by the Selection Panel and announced at the Final event. In addition there will be a Popular Choice Award which will be decided by a special online voting poll.  Staff will be encouraged to vote for the project of their choice for the Popular Choice Award.

The finalists will be profiled at the DG Masterclass in May 2016.

Awards Co-ordinators

A National Co-Ordinator supported by five additional co-ordinators have been appointed to manage and promote the Awards process and  are available to assist and support applicants. The Co-ordinators can be contacted via the following email address:

The Co-ordinators and their areas of remit are as follows:

Area Co-Ordinator
National Co-ordinator Health Service Excellence Awards 2016 Hilary Dolan
RCSI Hospitals Group, CHO Areas 8 & 9 and relevant voluntary providers Yvette Keating
South / South West Hospitals Group, UL Hospitals Group, CHO Areas 3, 4 & 5 and relevant voluntary providers: Tess O’Donovan
West / North West Hospitals Group, CHO Areas 1 & 2 and relevant voluntary providers: Francis Rogers
Ireland East Hospitals Group, Dublin Midlands Hospital Group, Childrens Hospital Group, CHO Areas 6 & 7 and relevant voluntary providers Mary Gorry
National Ambulance Service, PCRS, Corporate, Health and Wellbeing Division, Health Business Services and relevant voluntary providers Michele Guerin