Intensive care doctor, Sammy Batt-Rawden, was one of three finalists shortlisted for The Sun’s #WhoCaresWins Doctor of the Year award. She was recognised for her work advocating for those inside the NHS and championing their wellbeing.
The event, which honours those across the health and social care sector who go above and beyond for their patients or causes, was hosted by Davina McCall and shown on Channel 4 on Sunday 19 September. It was attended by stars including Sir Trevor McDonald, Gary Lineker, David Beckham, and HRH The Duke of Cambridge.
She said: “It was lovely to be nominated and I was over the moon to be able to dedicate this award nomination to my work family at Brighton ICU. They have really been through it the past few months. But despite working in the most trying of circumstances my colleagues are the most supportive team I have ever worked with. Really this recognition should have gone to them. I couldn’t be prouder to work in such an amazing team. I was also so humbled to be at the ceremony hearing about all the amazing things NHS staff are doing across the country.”
During the pandemic, amongst setting up several peer-to-peer mental health support groups and promoting NHS Million, a support group now followed by over 700,000 supporters and the NHS Blue Heart campaign, Sammy has been busy re-decorating the critical care staff area at the Royal Sussex County Hospital to provide a restful space for the ICU team.
She said: “I’m so proud of the transformation. We’ve converted the room into a haven that colleagues can sleep, relax and take some well-deserved time away from the pandemic.”
Sammy also founded the Doctors’ Association UK, which provides a voice for frontline doctors.
She said: “I didn’t realise how much it would be needed. No one knew a world-wide pandemic was around the corner, but the whole point of it is to try and support my colleagues in doing the amazing work that they do, and I’m really proud to be part of it.”
Sammy’s strength and inspiration comes from her son, Joshua, now four, who was born prematurely and spent his first few months of life in intensive care. She recalled: “I spent three months with Joshua in neonatal intensive care, where he had the best care from an amazing team. After my maternity leave, it motivated me to start working in ICU.
“A few years later I chose to go back and spend time working in paediatric ICU in the hospital Joshua had been treated in, helping critically unwell children from across the country by ambulance. It meant I could be there for other families at the worst time in their lives.”