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Our information champions do well in national awards


Some members of the Subject Access Team, Patrice Wright, Lisa Arnold, and Tracy Andrews, Award winner Sally Berrill, Head of Data Security and Protection for UHN, Chris Waller, former Head of Information Governance at Kettering General Hospital

Work by information governance experts at Northampton and Kettering General Hospital has been rated as some of the best in the country in a national awards scheme.

Sally Berrill, has won the Information Sharing Champion of the Year Award in the National Health and Social Care Strategic Information Governance Network Awards. News (

Sally is the Head of Data Security and Protection for the University Hospitals of Northamptonshire – which runs both Kettering and Northampton general hospitals.

She was also shortlisted in a second category of the awards - Information Governance Professional of the Year – for the way she has supported her team and promoted the importance of information sharing with partner organisations.

Chris Waller, previous Head of Information Governance at Kettering General Hospital, was also shortlisted for Information Governance Professional of the Year posthumously after he sadly died of cancer in May of this year.

And Northampton General Hospital’s Subject Access Team was shortlisted for Information Governance Team of the Year for the way it rose to the challenges brought by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Information Governance describes the way hospitals share and protect the information of patients and staff and ensure it is only used appropriately.

The sharing of information is very important to the NHS and is used to support vital clinical research for new and improved treatments, in reviewing the quality of care hospitals are providing, and in planning health services for the future.

Sally is Information Sharing Champion of the Year

Sally was nominated for her award as Information Sharing Champion of the Year by her colleague, Deputy Head of Data Security and Protection, Sarah Stell.

Sarah said: “Sally has worked tirelessly to embed the use of the Information Sharing Gateway both across the University Hospital of Northamptonshire Group and with our external system partners and further afield.

“She has delivered countless training and awareness sessions to external colleagues to advocate for the use of an electronic solution for the recording of information sharing.

“This means that we can share data securely and efficiently to enable the continuation of patient care, whilst meeting the principles of the UK General Data Protection Regulations (UK GDPR).”

The Information Sharing Gateway allows hospitals oversight of data that is shared with external parties, ensuring that the information is shared legally in line with the UK GDPR and only with organisations that can demonstrate that they will have appropriate safeguards in place to protect data.

Chris Waller was shortlisted to recognise his excellent contribution to information governance at KGH, prior to his death from cancer earlier this year.

The former Head of Information Governance at Kettering General Hospital was posthumously shortlisted for the Information Governance Professional of the Year. 

Chris Waller was nominated for the award by the Head of Data Security and Protection at UHN Sally Berrill.

She said: “Chris sadly died in May this year, after a cancer diagnosis in June 2021.  Despite his condition, Chris continued to work as-long-as possible to ensure that Information Governance at KGH was maintained, handing over his significant knowledge and experience to his Deputy. 

“Chris was determined that he would leave the hospital in an excellent place with first-rate foundations for Data Security and Protection embedded into practice. 

“Chris remained upbeat and positive throughout his illness, and even when we visited him in his last stages of life, he was keen to hear how new processes and on-going issues were being managed.

“Chris had an unwavering integrity, he could always take a view of the effect of an individual and the appropriate use of their data to ensure that they always had a voice in the room.

“He changed Information Governance from being a complicated subject that everyone avoided to becoming an open and transparent topic of conversation, Chris changed the culture of IG to be at the forefront of people’s minds.

“He had values and morals that have been adopted by everyone who had the opportunity to work with him.  He was calm, kind, approachable and always had his door open to help anyone that needed him. He was a true IG professional that we are proud to have worked with.”

Information Governance Team of the Year

Northampton General Hospital’s Access Team was among a handful of teams shortlisted for the national Information Governance Team of the Year Award.

This is the team that help members of the public to access their medical records, which is their right under the Data Protection Act 2018. 

The team process almost 300 requests each month from patients, health care professional, solicitors and police, meeting the statutory deadline of one calendar month.

They were nominated for the award for the way they have worked during the Covid-19 pandemic and maintained their services – even though they had to move offices twice.

They were nominated by Deputy Head of Data Security and Protection, Sarah Stell, who said: “I am nominating the NGH Access team for this award in recognition for the challenges that they have faced as a team since the start of the pandemic, and the way in which they have overcome these.

“The team have displayed great resilience, working on-site throughout Covid as a result of not being able to fulfil the requirements of their roles from home.

“During this time they have also embedded a new electronic solution for the management of subject access requests, making the process easier for requestors.

“The team are now adapting to the latest development, as the Trust moves towards an Electronic Document Management System which will once again change the way in which they work.”

The Northampton Team are now working with the KGH equivalent Team to align processes and improve response times which is a great example of the two hospitals working together to improve services.

Posted on Thursday 22nd December 2022
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