Local Health District awards

For the first time in two years, the Far West Local Health District [FWLHD] celebrated the achievements of its staff at its 12th annual Health Innovation and Staff Recognition Awards 2022 in person. The awards ceremony was held right here in Broken Hill, last Wednesday.

This year the Innovation Award went to a project which helped improve clinical outcomes for aged care residents with COVID-19.

This project was set-up to address the massive number of Residential Aged Care Facility (RACF) residents testing positive to COVID-19 presenting to Broken Hill Hospital Emergency Department being admitted to hospital following a RACF COVID-19 outbreak.

Within two working days, a COVID Hospital in the Home [COVID-HITH] was set up. Since beginning on April 19, the COVID-HITH has supported seven RACF facilities with eight COVID-19 outbreaks and has treated 127 RACF COVID-19 positive residents.

Exceptional customer service along with brilliant care and wellbeing was also awarded at the ceremony with the Staff Recognition Awards.  These were nominated by both peers and consumers. Staff were also recognised for long service to the health service.


Broken Hill dominated the awards, with one highlight being the tied winners of the Inspiring Team Award which was shared by the Broken Hill Community Mental Health Drug Alcohol Team and the FWLHD Palliative Care, Oncology and Cancer Services Team that covers Broken Hill and Buronga.

Noeline Cook, an administration officer based at Wentworth Health Service picked up the coveted Extraordinary Staff Member Award – Support Staff.

Interim Chief Executive, Mr Brad Astill said he was delighted both award winners and guests were able to physically attend after the virtual awards ceremonies from the last couple of years.

“It was a real pleasure that we have returned to presenting those awards fully in person and I extend my congratulations to all of the Award recipients.”

“It’s important to acknowledge the great achievements across the health service through the Health Innovation Awards and Staff Recognition Awards, and the long-standing staff in the District,” continued Mr Astill.

Staff Recognition Award winners for 2022 were:


Extraordinary Staff Member Awards:

  • Allied Health – Briana Smith (Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy Manager at Broken Hill Base Hospital).
  • Medical – Dr Sarah Wenham (Specialist Palliative Care Physician and currently Acting Director of Medical).
  • Mental Health – In a tie: James Pollack (NDIS Mental Health Officer) and Tahlia Kerin (Peer Supported Transfer of Care Worker for the Community Mental Health Drug & Alcohol Team)
  • Nursing and Midwifery – Janet Daley (Registered Nurse on Sub Acute Rehabilitation Unit at Broken Hill Health Service).
  • Support Staff – Noeline Cook (Administration Officer, Wentworth Health Service).

Consumer Nominated Staff Member:

  • Jennifer Wellington (School Nurse Coordinator).

Inspiring Team (tied):

  • Broken Hill Community Mental Health Drug Alcohol Team; and
  • FWLHD Palliative Care, Oncology and Cancer Services team for Broken Hill and Buronga.

Volunteer Superstar:

  • Palliative Care Volunteers.

Peer Recognition (Staff Brilliance):

  • Kahlia Liston (Clinical Nurse Educator Critical Care).

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