Outstanding’ RCHT nurses win national award after being nominated by patients

Monday, 12th September 2016


Candy Coombe and Clare Ferris have today been awarded a Gary Logue Colorectal Nurse Award from the charity, Beating Bowel Cancer, for their inspirational work with bowel cancer patients.

Candy and Clare, colorectal clinical nurse specialists received their joint award for their dedication to their patients, their care and thoughtfulness and generally being “outstanding nurses and compassionate human beings”. The joint award includes a £500 bursary towards their professional development.

Clare said: “I’ve met Gary when we both won the Carol Baillie award in 2009 at an event at the House of Commons and at other events in the past. He was a lovely man so I’m delighted to win the award, especially as it followed nominations from patients, since this is what our job is all about.”


Candy agreed: “When I heard we’d been nominated for the award I was absolutely thrilled and taken aback. To win something like this alongside Clare, who has been a Colorectal Nurse Specialist for many years, made me feel very honoured. I love my job and work hard to maintain good standards and provide the support our patients and their loved ones need. We work long hours but the work we do is very rewarding.”


Clare qualified in 1985 and moved to Cornwall in 1991 and started the Colorectal Cancer service in 2002. She then ran it single-handed until Candy joined her in 2009.


Her father was a doctor, who sadly died of bowel cancer. She said: “I’ve been through the cancer experience as a relative and this I think this helps me to empathise with other families and want to make sure they are cared for alongside our patient.


Candy joined her in 2009 and in 2013 Candy set up the online Cornwall bowel cancer support group on Facebook, which has a face to face group meeting every two months on a Saturday. The group, which the nurses run in their own time, are very popular and patients come from as far as Devon and they are contacted by patients and their families from all over England.


In the UK around 41,000 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year. It is the UK’s second biggest cancer. However, if caught in its early stages, 90% of cases can be treated successfully.

Chief Executive of Beating Bowel Cancer, Mark Flannagan, said: “We’re delighted to present both Clare and Candy with this award. Their dedication to their work and their willingness to go the extra mile for their patients is inspiring. We wanted to say thank you to them both for all the fantastic work they do to make lives better for bowel cancer patients and their families. They are both inspirational role models for all those who work with cancer patients and they richly deserve this award.”


For more information about bowel cancer, visit www.beatingbowelcancer.org .

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