BALLINA'S renal unit picked up a Minister's Excellent Award last Friday for their Advance Care Planning project.
NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner presented the award in Sydney at the 14th NSW Health Awards.
"The establishment of Advance Care Planning Directives is a very challenging area in healthcare and the process Ballina staff have put in place allows those special conversations to take place with patients, their families and carers," Mrs Skinner said.
"Empowering patients and their families to make informed decisions about end of life medical management is a confronting area but the Ballina Renal Service has done a wonderful job by ensuring the needs and wishes of their patients come first.
"These awards recognise the outstanding work of our state's doctors, nurses, allied health professionals as well as the hard-working staff who support these teams to save lives and keep the community healthy."
Northern NSW Local Health District Chief Executive, Chris Crawford said staff were absolutely delighted by the announcement.
"We have been holding local Quality Awards for many years and we continue to encourage our staff to submit entries," Mr Crawford said.
The Northern NSW health district submitted five entries to the awards and three of these were selected as finalists in the following categories: Empowering Patient - Advance Care Directives in Ballina Renal Service; Building the Health Workforce - Dementia Care Resource and Training Network eLearning Program submitted by the Dementia team lead by Anne Moehead, Nurse Practitioner Psychogeriatrics; and Harry Collins Award for Achievement in Reducing Healthcare Associated Infections - It's a Bugs Life a project by The Tweed Hospital to reduce healthcare acquired infection.