2022 Andreas Grüntzig Ethica Award: Nursing and Allied Professional Community, at heart of cardiovascular care

European Society of Cardiology

Paris, France 17 May 2022 – On the 19th of May the Andreas Grüntzig Ethica Award, the highest honour in the interventional cardiology community, will be awarded at EuroPCR 2022 to the Nurses and Allied Professionals community in recognition of the essential role they play in advancing the cardiovascular field, serving in a substantial and immediate way the needs of each individual patient. The ceremony will take place in Studio Havane of the Palais des Congrès Porte Maillot in Paris on Thursday 19 May at 11:45.

It is often said at EuroPCR that “together we do more” and, at a time when we reaffirm our fundamental value that “it’s all about the patient”, there is no better group of individuals who exemplify these ideals than the Nurses and Allied Professionals (NAPs). The expertise and physical presence of nurses and allied professionals has long been recognised as an essential part of modern interventional cardiology. The COVID-19 pandemic has only further underlined their importance through their interaction with patients and with the Heart Team. The fact that when NAP staff were requisitioned for COVID wards some cath labs had to close down only further testifies to that importance.

EuroPCR is proud to be presenting the Andreas Grüntzig Ethica Award to the entire NAP community in recognition of their dedication and skills as well as to further highlight the critical need for greater investment in their training, their work, and their quality of life – an investment at the same level as that which they themselves give to our patients and to our work together.

Increasing the public awareness of NAPs

For many years these committed healthcare professionals have had a dedicated section within the annual EuroPCR Course where they share knowledge and experience, discuss and present papers in their discipline, and advance education and accreditation of their profession.

The European Association of Percutaneous Cardiovascular Interventions (EAPCI) and PCR have always been very supportive, underlining the importance of the part NAPs play in the multidisciplinary team, “but still, it’s very special to receive this award and the recognition from our peers”, explained Lynne Hinterbuchner, chair of the EAPCI NAPs Committee and ACNAP Education Committee. “I think there is an unspoken acknowledgement of how much NAPs do and how they step up to meet each and every challenge, but this award is the first time that someone has said, ‘We’re really proud of you and want to recognise that you’ve done something very well.'”

Nurses and allied professionals at the heart of an interventional team approach: for the patient and for the doctor

Asked why a cath lab nurse or other allied professional would stay at their job – even when faced with pandemic conditions, the answers are revealing:

“I love the job that I do and am passionate about my profession.”

“I am privileged in being able to help and support patients at a time that they are going through one of the worst experiences of their lives, and I feel that I can make a difference to their experience, even if the outcome is not favourable.”

“I am proud to be a Cardiac Radiographer.”

“I trusted my team to take care of me, like I would for them.”

“I still want to improve patient care pathways and provide best evidence-based practices.”

NAPS are at the core of patient care in interventional cardiology . . . testimonials from the doctors that work with them

“The essential role NAPs play in relation to our patients is simply the very essence of healthcare.”

“Nurses and allied professionals tend directly to the sick, in a much closer and more intimate way than doctors can, directly helping our patients bear the burden of their disease – even when NAPs are at a higher risk of becoming sick themselves, as in the context of an infectious disease such as COVID-19.”

“The patient is the most important person in the cath lab and NAPS are an extension of our eyes and ears, our sense of touch – aiding our understanding of individuals and allowing for a better patient experience, all of which is an essential part of healing.”

“NAPs adapt to changing situations and circumstances quickly and nurses themselves are the veritable advocates in patient advocacy.”

Indeed, NAPs are involved in every aspect of interventional cardiology.

• Working directly with patients and cardiologists, nurses guide patients before, during and after interventions. They prepare patients for a procedure, assist doctors in such interventional procedures as balloon angioplasty or stent placement, and more.

• Medical technicians cover a vast range of tasks, from registering patients to administering drugs, to emergency care or resuscitation.

• Radiographers and radiographic technicians manipulate C-arms (agile X-ray devices), check X-ray safety and often help with other imaging equipment.

• Cardiac physiologists and technicians take haemodynamic measurements and monitor patients.

• Nursing assistants provide essential help with patient care and running of the lab.

• Clinical researchers promote and deliver research in the cath lab.

Without question – deserving of the Andreas Grüntzig Ethica Award

The Andreas Grüntzig Ethica award is traditionally awarded to one or two individuals who have contributed in a substantial way to serving the needs of individual patients by helping the cardiovascular community to share knowledge, experience and practice in their constantly evolving field. Only once before has this been awarded to a group as a whole: in 2013 to the Medical Device Industry in recognition of their commitment to research and innovation. It is without question that in 2022, awarding this honour to Nurses and Allied Professionals is a clear choice, which we make without hesitation.

Members of the PCR NAP Board and EAPCI NAP Committee will be present at a special ceremony in Paris on Thursday 19 May to receive the award on behalf of their community.

Nurses and allied professionals provide us with a holistic and global vision of healthcare – a web of support, patient advocacy and patient care management, quality-of-care from diagnosis to discharge – and PCR in offering them the Ethica Award 2022 is proud to recognise the breadth, the dedication, the multidisciplinary teamwork and experience and, above all, the humanity of our close collaborators and colleagues.

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