The co-founder and managing director of Abbots Care has been confirmed as the first recipient of the government’s Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care award.
Camille Leavold (pictured left), who started the domiciliary care business with her mum in 1995, has received the gold award, which recognises outstanding achievements and performance demonstrated by a nurse or social care worker in their sphere of practice.
The awards were officially launched last month, and aim to recognise the exceptional efforts of the social care workforce and to bring recognition of the sector in line with the NHS workforce awards.
Under Leavold’s leadership, Abbots Care runs four branches in Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Dorset, employing 500 care workers who support almost 1,000 people in their own homes.
Commenting on the award win, the MD said: “I am sincerely delighted and grateful to have received this award. I love working to help support society’s most vulnerable people by providing them with the support they need to remain living at home.
“I am also really thrilled that Deborah Sturdy, Chief Nurse for Adult Care and the Dept of Health and Social Care is working so hard to shine a light on, and bring recognition to, the valuable and vital work of the UK’s home care workforce.”
Leavold, who has recently been named in HCI’s Power List, has been recognised for her work throughout the pandemic to develop schemes to help counter the effects of the crisis on service users and staff, to help support the NHS, to assist partner organisations, and to offer crucial leadership and support to staff.
Specifically, she has created a learning management system, clear career pathways and a Leadership Academy within Abbots Care to support rising stars within the organisation to become managers.
Also during the pandemic, the MD supported her teams by cohorting care workers into specialist COVID teams, whose role was solely to support recipients of home care with symptoms or a positive diagnosis of COVID-19.
Those who volunteered to join these teams received advanced, intensive training in infection prevention and control from the local Clinical Commissioning Group and were placed on special rotas, which ensured they had comfort breaks.
Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care, Professor Deborah Sturdy (pictured right) said: “I am thrilled to announce the first Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care award is going to someone who has put so much hard work and dedication into developing a service to provide care for those who need it most.
“Camille continues to be an inspiring leader to all those around her and across the home care sector nationally, and has helped develop staff to become managers themselves thanks to her support and coaching.
“I look forward to recognising more exceptional people like Camille who are shining examples of the very best our social care sector has to offer.”
Minister for Care Helen Whately commented: “I want to offer big congratulations to Camille, who is hugely deserving of this first award.
“The social care workforce is full of inspiring leaders, especially those who have helped and supported staff during one of the most challenging years the care sector has ever faced.
“I look forward to seeing more people recognised by Professor Sturdy for their exceptional efforts within the sector with our new Adult Social Care awards.”