Midwife who beat breast cancer wins award

A mum-of-two who beat breast cancer last year has now been named Midwife of the Year.

Whiston Hospital midwife Jenny O’Neill, from Widnes, has worked with the Trust for eight years and was nominated by her colleagues for her outstanding care of women needing high dependency care and her unwavering support for her colleagues.

In January 2019, the 36-year-old was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent treatment and multiple surgeries in the following months, including a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery.

Over the last year, Jenny also said her work friends have helped and supported her with fundraising events and fitness challenges that enabled them to donate £9,500 to the Burney Breast Unit, St Helens Hospital.

Now back at work, Jenny has this year become the first ever winner of the NMC (Nursing and Midwifery Council) Midwives’ Midwife of the Year award from the Royal College of Midwives (RCM).

Due to take place in London in May, the RCMs Annual Midwifery Awards 2020 ceremony was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and instead a virtual event was held with winners announced online.

Originally, Jenny had planned to travel to London for the awards, but instead gathered around the screen to have afternoon tea and watch the announcements with daughters Faye and Grace.

The award was chosen by RCM President Kathryn Gutteridge who said: “It’s clear that Jennifer is respected and loved not only by her close midwife colleagues, but by the wider maternity team.

“Her enthusiasm for supporting women by putting them at the centre of their own care is evident in all she does.

“I wish to congratulate Jennifer and thank her for all she does for colleagues and for women and their babies.”

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