Tallaght University Hospital presents fifth annual Hero Awards to Staff


Tallaght University Hospital (TUH) has announced the winners of its fifth annual Hero Awards, which recognise staff whose work has made an incredible difference to patients and their families, as well as their colleagues.

Announcing the awards, Chief Executive of TUH, Lucy Nugent said: “Tallaght University Hospital is nothing without the people who work here, which is why these awards are so important. I am very proud of our staff and their commitment and true heartfelt desire to make things better for our patients. These awards give patients, families and colleagues the chance to say thank you and to recognise the excellence demonstrated by the staff here at TUH, something I know will remain the case, as the hospital continues to expand its services.”

Also commenting on the awards, the Director of HR at TUH, Sharon Larkin said: “It has been heartening to read all the nominations and hear of all the exceptional things our staff do to care for our patients. What is also clear is that despite a tough couple of years, staff continued to work tirelessly in often difficult circumstances. The calibre of our staff and their commitment to our patients is clear and I want to take this opportunity to thank our staff for their dedicated service.”

The 2022 TUH Hero Award Categories and winners are; 

Winner of the Patient Experience Award – Nurse Vangie Heroso, Post Anaesthesia Care Unit

This category is open to our patients, their families and our staff to nominate an individual/team who for that patient demonstrated the finer ideals of caring through extraordinary service, as they delivered an exceptional healthcare experience to a patient and their family. A family member spoke about how the winner of this year’s Patient Experience Award, Staff Nurse Heroso cared for her brother during his final days in the Post Anaesthesia Care Unit at TUH. Praising her invaluable support at a very difficult time this family member described Vangie as “A real earth angel who should be recognised for her hard work and kind heart for the love & dignity she showed me and especially my brother during his last days. There was no other family there just me and my brother, so she was a great comfort, and she will always be a part of the memories I have of my last moments with my beautiful big brother.”

Winners of the People Caring for People Award  – Alison Baker Kerrigan, Arts Officer and Clara Monahan, Music Therapist in the Arts & Health Department

This category is for a staff member who exemplifies the core values of TUH. This year the award is being presented jointly to Alison and Clara who were nominated by staff for their work in the Arts & Health Department. In their nomination, for the winners of the People Caring for People Award, their colleagues reflected that: “Ali and Clara are the embodiment of what TUH is all about. The work they do is quietly undertaken but makes an invaluable difference to the experience of our patients and staff. They have been innovative and creative in how they have continued to provide an Arts and Health service during the height of the pandemic.”

Winner of the Unsung Hero Award – Alison Loughnane Health Care Assistant, William Stokes Unit

This award is for a staff member who demonstrates exceptional service to the organisation. In their nomination, Alison was an extremely popular choice for this award and was nominated by a number of colleagues. One colleague paid tribute to the winner of the Unsung Hero Award saying: “Alison always tries her best to keep the values of the institution and go the extra mile for her patients. She always tries to find time to help others and brings a very positive attitude to the unit.  She is hard working and a great team player helping and supporting clinical staff, patients and families.” 

The winner of the Service Excellence Award Professor Tara Coughlan, Consultant Geriatrician  

This award is for a staff member who provides outstanding service to patients or staff within our Hospital. In a tribute, one colleague described the winner of the Service Excellence Award in the following way: “Professor Coughlan has worked tirelessly for the older person in TUH for most of her career. She is exemplary as a clinician and stands very strongly amongst her peers. She is an inspirational person and clinician and it is a great privilege to work alongside her. She never asks anyone to do a job that she cannot complete herself and inspires those around her to be the best that they can be. She respects colleagues from all disciplines and works in a truly multidisciplinary way.”

Winner of the Mentoring Award – Dr. Ann Leonard, Quality Innovation Manager     

This category is for a staff member who demonstrates outstanding teaching skills and serves as a role model and mentor to their colleagues. After nominating Dr Leonard as the winner of this year’s Mentoring Award one colleague remarked “Ann is innovative, and inclusive and gets individuals involved with interesting projects. She enables these individuals to develop skills outside of their department by getting them engaged in these side projects and is both empowering and motivating.” 

 Winner of the Teamwork AwardAnn Dwyer, Clinical Nurse Manager, Franks Ward

This award is for a valued team player that will always ask how they can help. In a tribute to Ann Dwyer who won the teamwork award, one colleague said “Ann is a great team player, she is selfless, sees the big picture, has initiative and finds solutions. She always has a positive attitude to her job and always has the patient’s best interest at the centre of her management of Franks Ward. Her positivity in the face of challenges is inspiring and uplifting. She has a powerful can-do approach to every difficulty and never complains.”

Winner of Team of the Year – Patient Food Services Team

This category is for a new team that demonstrates excellence in teamwork. Speaking about this year’s Team of the Year winner one colleague remarked: “The Catering Team have gone over and beyond in caring for our patients and staff since we moved from the base hospitals to TUH. During COVID the catering Patient Food Services Teams strived to ensure that a professional and homely service was received by our patients, especially because they were unable to have visitors. They produced homemade treats as a delight for patients in the afternoon during Covid.  All members of the team are always on hand to help with awareness drives such as hand hygiene and healthy lunch bags for health and well-being days. As a team, they always have a smile on their face and a hello which makes patients and their families feel valued and at home.”

There were two further awards nominated by Chief Executive Lucy Nugent and the management team to recognise individuals who go above and beyond, often behind the scenes, which may not be evident to all staff. The first recipient of this award was Dr. Maria Donnelly, Consultant Intensivist.  In her tribute, Ms Nugent said: “Dr. Donnelly is receiving this award in recognition of her many years of dedicated service and more recently the leadership she has demonstrated in being the clinical lead for the ICU expansion. I have no doubt that her attention to detail and tenacity has ensured the development of this new world-class unit for our patients and staff.”

The second recipient was Mr. Broc Delaney, Porter.  In her commendation, the CEO Lucy Nugent said: “Broc is receiving this award in recognition of the many years of dedicated service he has given to the Hospital in his role as Porter and also for his excellent leadership as Chair of the Trade Union Alliance. I have always appreciated his professionalism, solution-focused engagement with the Hospital executive and commitment to enhancing the working lives of staff and also patient care.”

Tallaght University Hospital Foundation is committed to investing in TUH and promoting quality care and wellness throughout the community. If you would like to support the work of the Foundation please go to www.tuhf.ie

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of www.newsgroup.ie with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at info@newsgroup.ie.



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