A NURSE matron has been named ‘nurse leader of the year’.

Gillan Belfon-Johnson who is based in the North Middlesex University Hospital’s critical care unit was given the honour at the Nursing Times Awards 2017.

Her most significant achievement is the building of a ‘brilliant team spirit’ among the multinational staff.

She supervises 98 nurses from 38 different countries, who together improve patient care.

When Gillian joined the hospital in 2015 she found many nurses had low-confidence.

Some felt under-skilled and struggled to form strong working relationships with colleagues - so she helped build a new supportive team culture.

Gillian, said: “As our team grew in confidence, the single most important thing was being visible to them and being available for them every day in the unit at 7:30am.

“That meant they could always come to me for advice or help.

“I got support from an additional matron so that senior leadership would be available for them five to seven days a week.

“I also got the help and support of senior colleagues when the going got tough, which sometimes it did.

“My director of nursing, head nurse and general manager said ‘Keep going. You are doing fine! You can do this.’ “It’s the kind of encouragement we all need in tough and caring jobs.”

Rosemary Dadswell, urology clinical nurse specialist narrowly missed out on the award, having also been shortlisted in the nurse of the year category.

Rosemary has worked at North Middlesex Hospital for 31 years.

Her happiest moments happen when patients say her unit has ‘given them their life back’.

Rosemary, said: “Many patients say that the urology suite is like an oasis in the hospital.

“It is friendly, welcoming and safe; they feel they can talk about their problems in confidence and feel secure.”

Gillan’s team cares for 1,400 patients every year.

Patients who have life-threatening health conditions like kidney and cardiac failure are common.