Winner: Dr Robert Sheldon - Consultant Electrophysiologist, University of Calgary, Canada
In the photo: Arrhythmia Alliance Founder and Trustee Trudie Lobban MBE, Dr Robert Sheldon, and Arrhythmia Alliance President Professor A. John Camm.
2018 is STARS 25th Anniversary year and for most of those years STARS has been very privileged to benefit from Roberts' knowledge and appreciation of syncope. His understanding of the causes of syncope and tireless efforts to develop simple, accessible and effective approaches to its diagnosis, prognosis and treatment has played a major part in STARS becoming a respected (and much loved by patients!) international charity.
Determined that his fellow Canadians should benefit from similar support and information, in partnership with STARS, he established STARS Canada.
Every year, Robert travels to STARS HRC meetings. He supports STARS Patients Day contributing to the agenda, introducing new international speakers for us and presenting for STARS patients who are always thirsty to hear about new research.
This year, Robert flew to London to support Arrhythmia Alliance World Heart Rhythm Week, speaking at Westminster for STARS on 'Take Fainting To Heart – there is no such thing as a simple faint' and representing our much envied STARS MAC. As a member of our medical advisory committee he is always amongst the first to support our patient services team and the worried patient!
Winners: Dr Andrew Mitchell & Dr Mark Anderson
It was an extremely hard decision to separate the winner of this award, so after a lot of deliberation we decided to award both Dr Andrew Mitchell & Dr Mark Anderson.
Dr Andrew Mitchell is an inspiring and dedicated Consultant Cardiologist who single-handedly manages a complex and demanding cardiac service in Jersey. He is constantly motivated to improve and enhance the Island’s services and, over the last ten years, has transformed arrhythmia management. His innovations have facilitated many services to be offered locally, preventing costly off island referrals, stress to patients and their families, reducing waiting times and improving outcomes.
In 1997 Dr Mark Anderson was appointed to one of the inaugural consultant posts in the newly founded cardiac centre in Swansea. Mark has developed the EP service from scratch. Initially focussing on cardiac and follow up. He utilised his earlier research experience to develop an innovative remote monitoring service that has been in place for over 20 years allowing all patients within a geographically large area to receive high quality patient centred care long before it became fashionable.
Since this time Mark has trained countless registrars, fellows and arrhythmia nurses, many of whom continue to work within the service either at the cardiac centre or at local hospitals. This approach has been underpinned by a commitment to training and inclusivity of his medical colleagues and equity of access for the services patients
Winner: The Friarage Hospital, Northallerton (FHN) cardiac rhythm management (CRM) Team Service
The Friarage Hospital (FHN) is the smallest acute DGH in England providing healthcare for >120,000 people in rural North Yorkshire, (1,000 km2). The South Tees Hospitals NHSFT includes The James Cook University Hospital (JCUH) tertiary centre >20 miles away.
The cardiology department is a fully integrated unit comprising cardiac investigation unit, outpatient and administration facilities. The team has expanded to include 2 FHN based cardiologists, cardiac physiologists, specialist nurses (SpN), administrative staff and support workers providing a high-quality service, responsive to patients’ needs, close to home. Since 2013, they have incrementally introduced key CRM service improvements in: Rapid Access Arrhythmia Service, Complex Device Patient Repatriation and Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) Clinics and many more.
In the photo: Arrhythmia Alliance Founder and Trustee Trudie Lobban; Rachel Harris, Patient Services Associate, accepting the award on behalf of Jane Bateson; and Arrhythmia Alliance President Professor John Camm.
Winner: Ms Jane Bateson
Ms Jane Bateson has been chosen for this award due to her amazing contribution to STARS. After being diagnosed with PoTS herself, Jane has gone to great lengths to raise awareness of heart rhythm disorders. She spends all of her free time running a book swap at her local Co-Op, to raise not only funds but also awareness through her local media and newspapers. Jane is also responsible for her MP Douglas Ross, who attended the World Heart Rhythm Week event at Parliament, being involved with STARS too.