Winner The DESMOND Collaborative

A self-management education programme for people newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes was developed.

The DESMOND (Diabetes Education and Self Management for Ongoing and Newly Diagnosed) Training and Quality Development (TQD) Programme is delivered by two trained health care professional educators to a group of patients over two sessions.

It is designed to give people the best start in living with this chronic condition, by providing them with the information, motivation and skills to self manage their diabetes in the way they choose.

The programme was developed by a task group of the DESMOND Collaborative, which is a multidisciplinary group of health professionals, academics and people with diabetes.

Through involving educators, trainers and patients in the development process, the programme has created training, mentorship and continued professional development that is integrated with the patient education programme being delivered.

The benefits of the DESMOND Programme have been proven in a randomised controlled trial, funded by DiabetesUK.
One of the keys to its success is that the educators undergo a training programme. Potential educators are put forward by their employing trust. As of June 2007, this training has produced over 350 graduates in 67 primary care organisations in the

A further crucial element of the TQD Programme is the support provided by the DESMOND National Programme Team. This central infrastructure has facilitated the growth of the training programme, provided project management and ensured tasks were accomplished to deadline. The national director and programme manager advise and support the trainers and educators, oversee the organisation of training and related events; expedite the production of manuals, materials and teaching aids, and ensure that trainers and assessors are supported to carry out their roles within DESMOND.
The judges said: 'Highly relevant to NHS of 2007 and very impressive. Great potential for transfer to other disorders.'

DESMOND Training and Quality Development Programme, contact

Highly CommendedNorth BristolNHS Trust

A staff development policy was devised to provide training opportunities and encourage career progression.

North Bristol NHS Trust experiences a high turnover of staff in the lower pay bands; for health care assistants turnover is more than 18 per cent.

In the past, health care assistants were recruited into post and after a suitable period of experience were randomly offered national vocational qualifications. They had little opportunity to access higher level learning and staff in other support worker roles had even less opportunity.

In February 2005 the trust received funding from Skills for Health to develop skills escalators and a personal development portfolio (PDP) for all of its support workers.
Where possible, these skills escalators would dovetail into other role specific skills escalators. For example, the health care assistant skills escalator would link to the nurse skills escalator so that staff could move from having no healthcare skills to gaining the skills they needed to enter nurse training. Using a skills escalator, staff would be able to specialise and stop or start training according to their roles, career opportunities and aspirations.

The purpose of the PDP was to provide a tangible working tool for individual support workers to collect evidence of learning and development in line with the knowledge and skills framework (KSF), and to be a signpost for individuals to access learning.

Support staff at the trust had never been given their own development portfolios and it was felt that a PDP for each support worker would be a major factor in encouraging disaffected learners to return to learning and for all support staff to feel valued.

Today the PDPs are given out as a matter of course to all new support workers at induction.

The judges said: 'Very impressive strategy and good implementation. Very significant numbers of people working through the variety of skills escalators they have developed.'

Support Worker Skills Escalator and Personal Development Portfolio Project, contact


Derbyshire Mental Health Trust

A post-graduate certificate was created to develop skills in working with personality disorder. Accredited throughDerbyUniversity, the course is for qualified staff working at Derbyshire Mental Health Trust.

There were no accredited programmes for care coordinators within mental health outside of very specific and extensive psychotherapy training.

The trust felt that developing a cohort of staff with a recognised qualification in dealing with personality disorder would create the 'tipping point' which would change the culture within mental health services.

The course content and assessments are benchmarked against the continuous professional development indicators in the capability framework for working with personality disorder.

Working with Personality Disorders, contact

HomertonUniversityHospitalNHS Foundation Trust

A model of good practice and a guide for work-based placements were developed, in preparation for the delivery of the specialised Diploma in Society, Health and Development in Hackney.

The work was undertaken by Homerton University Hospital and Inspire, the education business partnership for Hackney, after the borough's school and college partnerships won approval to deliver three of the new 14-19 Diplomas as part of the first wave of pilot schemes in 2008. The diplomas combine essential skills and knowledge, hands-on experience and employer-based learning.

The project involved aligning work experience in an acute hospital setting with specific curriculum outcomes.

Skills for Hackney - the new diplomas, contact

NHS Yorkshire and theHumber

A strategic partnership was developed between the NHS and the Learning and Skills Council, firstly in West Yorkshire and more recently across Yorkshire and Humber.

As the largest employer in the region, the skills requirements of the NHS have a major affect on the skills profile of the region. The aim of the partnership was to coordinate regional skills development and NHS needs.

The main focus is the skills development needs of support staff within the NHS, A4C Bands 1 - 4, who traditionally have had limited access to training and development.

The train to gain work stream led to 850 staff being nominated for level 2 training this year.

Skills Development Through Partnership, contact