A ward sister is the first Health Hero Award winner of 2019 at the Orthopaedic Hospital in Gobowen for encouraging staff to have their flu jab.

Sarah Kaye, who works on the specialist oncology ward, found herself in isolation back in March 2018 after contracting Influenza A – and was told she potentially could have died if it wasn’t for her flu jab.

As part of the hospital's campaign to encourage staff to have the flu vaccination mother-of-three Sarah agreed to tell her story - to staff but also to the public.

Sarah received four nominations for the Health Hero Award after sharing her story through a video.

Flu champion Karin Evans, one of those who nominated Sarah, said: “I would like to nominate Sarah because of the bravery she showed when agreeing to tell her story following her illness with flu.

"It inspired so many more people, both at RJAH and outside the organisation, to have their vaccination.”

Sarah was presented her award by chief executive Mark Brandreth and announced last week at the monthly Board of Directors meeting.

As well as the Health Hero badge and certificate, Sarah also received a box of fresh fruit and vegetables kindly donated by Box of Goodness.

Sarah said: “I am totally shocked but also very grateful to be a winner of the Health Hero Award – I’d like to thank everyone who nominated me.

“I definitely didn’t expect anything for getting involved with the flu campaign; my main goal was to try to prevent others falling ill and I’d like to thank our fantastic NHS, as without it, I may not be here.

“I’d like to thank Oswald Ward and RJAH staff for all the support they gave me when I was ill, and also a big thank you to Karin Evans for her hard work with the flu campaign.”

Mark added: “Sarah was extremely brave to put her awful story out there and it’s great to see more staff recognising the importance of having their flu jab.

“It not only protects themselves and their families, but also our patients which is vital during the winter months.

“A huge congratulations to Sarah, she’s a very worthy winner.”