Nurse receives award from Prime Minister

A SUFFOLK nurse who was nominated for a top award by a grateful teenage patient has been presented with her prize by the Prime Minister.

Will Clarke

A SUFFOLK nurse who was nominated for a top award by a grateful teenage patient has been presented with her prize by the Prime Minister.

Rachel Andrews, from Bury St Edmunds, received the Patients' Choice award last week at a reception at Downing Street.

She was nominated by the family of Ed Coller, 13, who made a remarkable recovery after losing an eye.

He said Ms Andrews went out of her way to keep him comforted and reassured after he suffered the horrific injury in a freak accident in Bury last September - and nominating her for the award was the perfect way to thank her.

Ed, of Thetford, said: “She's brilliant and she definitely deserved to win overall. She was just there for me explaining what was going on I feel fine now and I can even pop my fake eye out at school now.”

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The youngster needed four operations over four weeks to repair severe facial injuries, including the surgery to remove his right eye.

Ed's mother, Dawn, said: “Before the accident Ed was a cheerful boy and little troubled him.

“Today he is exactly the same he just has one less eye and some fading scars.

“His remarkable recovery, particularly psychologically, is due to the excellent care of all who treated him. And Rachel stands out even against such a background of excellence.”

Mrs Andrews, who works at the Eye Treatment Unit at West Suffolk Hospital in Bury, said: “It is incredible to win this award - it is really humbling, Ed has been very, very brave.

“It's so exciting to have been asked to meet the Prime Minister. I was really impressed that he clearly valued not just the technical aspects of ophthalmic nursing but also the caring side.”

Speaking at the reception to the assembled nurses, Mr Brown said: “I want to thank you for what you are doing and how you are making, not just the health service, but all services, to elderly people as well as to young people, better in our country.

“All of you have done something that is absolutely pioneering in your own area, and all of you have made a huge difference.”