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Whistleblowing nurse Margaret Haywood wins patient award


Margaret Haywood, a nurse who was struck off for secretly filming patient neglect in a Sussex hospital has been named the patients’ choice at a national awards ceremony.

Ms Haywood was later reinstated after admitting breaching patient confidentiality to highlight terrible conditions at the Royal Sussex Hospital in Brighton.

Her film was used in a BBC Panorama programme, and her ban was later replaced with a one-year caution.

She told the BBC: “I still believe it was the right thing to do, and this award makes it even better. I still say my actions were justified, and getting this award gives me a lot more credibility.”

She is soon to start a new job training nurses and carers, and said she did not feel angry about the way she was treated.

She was the overwhelming public favourite at the Nursing Standard Nurse of the Year Awards, and judges said she “demonstrated outstanding nursing qualities and a willingness to go the extra mile”.

They said that Ms Haywood had “clearly made a huge sacrifice on behalf of her patients”, and that “at least some were grateful for her actions”.


Readers' comments (8)

  • I am so pleased for Margaret and have backed her every step of the way, justice has been served. Well done for uncovering that which goes on in many places and for putting yourself and your much loved career on the line, you are indeed a courageous woman. Not everything in life is black and white Margaret, thank you.

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  • Surprise surprise, that's the way of the world today in England, you break the rules and you get an award. What's the point of having a code. This is demoralising. I am disgusted by the system. We welcome more peolpe to break the code now, do we?

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  • Congratulations Margaret you deserve it for having the courage to do what many of us wish we had done.
    As for anonymous 2. Get a life, and if it means that our older population and everyone else for that matter gets a better deal with appropriate care then yes we should all be laying ourselves on the line. Caring is what most of us went into nursing for, not protecting poor practice or managers that are determined to get to the top of the ladder regardless of who or what they sacrifice to get there, and beleive me they are not just in one hospital or PCT. All this open door policies and managers who listen is lip service they have act on what they are told not bury their heads and hope it goes away.
    Once again congratulations and best wishes for your future career, perhaps with someone like you at the helm we will get some nurses with good basic nursing skills again.

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  • The public are not rewarding Margaret for "breaking the rules/code" - they are rewarding her for doing the "moral" rather than the "legal" right thing to do. She may have been wrong in the "letter of the law" but she was not wrong in the "spirit of the code" i.e. To protect the public.

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  • i think she was morally justified in doing what she did for our elderly people im nearly there so self interest at play here lol

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  • Awesome. She risked a lot to highlight bad patient care.

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  • Margaret Haywood did the right thing. She did obtain the relevant consents before the programe was aired. I am surprised that the nurses she exposed who in effect were abusing the vulnerable people in their care were not removed from the register. They were breaking the law, the Code and all the core nursing and human values.
    I myself was penalised for trying to improve bad practice and when I took disciplinary action against the managers it was all brused under the carpet and the patients are still dying- the RCN was helples, the staaff and the patients were exposed to contunuous abuse- I could not do what Margaret had done- I haven't had the courage, so well done Margaret I am so proud of you.

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  • Just received this. Why has it taken so long or is it just a cynical election ploy?

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