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UHBW staff members recognised in Queen's Birthday Honours List

Last updated: 15/06/2021

Queen\'s Birthday Honours

Two members of staff from University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW) have been recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Ruth Hendy, lead cancer nurse for the Trust, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) and Dr Tom Wells, a medical oncology consultant, has been honoured with an MBE.

Ruth, who has worked at the Trust for over 30 years, has received her BEM in recognition for her services to people living with and affected by cancer.

In her role as lead cancer nurse, Ruth has been instrumental in leading the development, implementation and securing the long term sustainability of these services for our cancer patients.

This includes initiatives such as the recent establishment of cancer ‘Personalised Care and Support’ services (including Health and Wellbeing events and Holistic Needs Assessments for people with cancer), which help people to maximise their health and wellbeing and provide holistic care and support for people living with and beyond their cancer diagnosis, alongside their clinical care.

Ruth said: “I feel so humbled to have been acknowledged in this way. I’ve worked with so many wonderful, dedicated and enthusiastic people, in cancer services, over 34 years at the Trust. I really feel this award should be seen as recognition of all we have achieved together, for people affected by cancer in Bristol and across the region. We’re not done yet though, there is still more to do.”

Dr Tom Wells, who works out of Weston General Hospital, has been awarded for his services to medicine and people with disabilities in the medical profession.

After a winter sports accident in 1992 left him permanently paralysed from the chest down and then being unable to speak for a year due to windpipe narrowing as a complication of the placement of a tracheostomy, Tom was determined to return to medical school and qualified as a doctor in June 1996.

Since then, Tom has gone on to co-found the disability course at Bristol Medical School and over the years has given presentations to medical students about his unique perspective of disability as both a clinician and a patient. He has also taken part in the Royal College of Physicians This Doctors Can campaign and written a book about his experience, called Behind the Curtains.

Tom said: “Receiving this award acts as real encouragement to continuing doing what I’m doing, and I’m intent on using my situation to challenge attitudes and help educate people around disability in medicine, showing what’s possible. It was such a pleasant surprise to receive this recognition, I feel honoured and I am very grateful to my wife and daughter for all of their support over the years.”