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Guy’s and St Thomas’ staff honoured in Long Service Awards

Last updated: Thursday, 26 January 2023

Children's models

Trust staff receiving their Long Service Award

More than 20 Guy’s and St Thomas’ staff have been celebrated for their commitment to the Trust in a ceremony to mark their long service.

In total, the 22 members of staff have worked more than 550 years for the Trust in areas spanning pharmacy to food service, finance and more.

The long-serving staff who have been with Guy’s and St Thomas’ at least 25 years included midwives, nurses, doctors, IT technicians, a speech and language therapist, catering finance manager, dental records team leader, patient food service assistants and an anaesthetic equipment manager, among others.

Professor Ian Abbs was also honoured for his long association with Guy’s and St Thomas’, having worked at the Trust for 32 years. From training as a junior doctor at St Thomas’, Prof Abbs has been a consultant renal physician, Medical Director and Chief Medical Officer before becoming Chief Executive in 2019.

Charles Alexander, Chairman of Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “It is a privilege to be able to honour so many staff for their dedication and loyalty to the Trust, particularly in more recently challenging times.

“Your commitment to helping us care for our patients is an inspiring legacy of your careers and we are grateful for all you have given throughout your many years of service to Guy’s and St Thomas’.”

Prof Abbs read out the citations for each long-serving member of staff, noting some of their achievements and career highlights, before presenting them with a medal in a ceremony at St Thomas’ Hospital. The Long Service Awards are made possible thanks to Guy's & St Thomas' Charity.

Among those celebrated was Professor Richard Leach, clinical director of pulmonary, adult critical care and sleep at Guy’s and St Thomas’. He was described as being “much loved” by all his team and a stalwart of the Trust’s critical care and medicine departments for a quarter-century.

Prof Leach has cared for tens of thousands of patients and trained thousands of doctors and nurses during his time at the Trust. His citation noted that Leach’s Critical Care Medicine at a Glance is beloved by medical students and junior doctors across the world.

Prof Leach said: “I enjoy both my clinical role, which I hope I do well, but also my teaching and managerial roles. I hope that I can make it easier for my colleagues to do their jobs to the high standard they all aspire to and that they all feel valued and supported.”

David Gravells, director of central services (Essentia), marked 27 years with the Trust and a career of successfully progressing into ever-more-senior roles, having led many critical projects across accommodation, catering, security, patient transport and sterile services.

David said: “I am very proud to receive the award. I’m fortunate to have developed my career at Guy’s and St Thomas’ and I’m grateful for the opportunities. The best part is leading amazing teams who provide such valuable services to enhance the patient experience.”

Liz Graham, Macmillan personalised cancer care lead, was praised for her “truly holistic and person-centered care”. Liz said: “It was a great honour to attend and receive my 25 years long service award along with many other colleagues also being recognised.  I started working at Guy’s and St Thomas’ in September 1997 when I first qualified as a nurse.  My final student placement was on Samaritan ward and that is when I realised I wanted to work within Haematology and Oncology.  I have had the opportunity to progress my career and work with some fantastic colleagues but most importantly work with patients, ensuring care is personalised to meet their needs.”

Dr Vicky Slonims, senior consultant speech and language therapist at Evelina London Children’s Hospital, is in her 27th year at the Trust. Among her many qualities and achievements she was noted for being “an inspirational leader and passionate champion for speech and language therapists and AHPs”. Her expertise, wisdom and counsel is “hugely valued” by her colleagues, Dr Slonims’ citation said.

Jayne Amponsah, principle pharmacy technician, started working at the Trust in 1997. Jayne was praised for “providing invaluable teaching and mentoring to the many pre-registration technician’s pharmacists and pharmacy students across the years” and for having a “vast bank of experience”.

Noreen Elsayed, catering finance manager, also joined Guy’s and St Thomas’ in 1997 from the BBC. Noreen was described as “hardworking, conscientious, supportive and a dynamic manager.”

Tony Eyareya, cyber security operations analyst, has worked at the Trust for 29 years from when he joined as an apprentice and he was acknowledged for his friendliness and being “determined to make a difference” in his job.

Dr Ranjababu Kulasegaram, consultant in HIV, was also honoured. Colleagues highlighted his work in viral Hepatitis where he managed to cure Hep C in the vast majority of co-infected patients. They paid tribute to Dr Kulasegaram as being a “fantastic, very patient-focussed doctor” and added: “We all feel incredibly lucky to work with him and benefit hugely from his experience and wisdom.”

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