The leg ulcer service in North Devon has been highly commended in a prestigious competition run by the Health Service Journal.

The Northern Devon Healthacre NHS Trust team earned ‘highly commended’ in the primary care or community service redesign initiative category of the HSJ Value Awards.

Community teams at NDHT took over delivery of the service in 2018, before which it was provided in GP surgeries, and the trust says outcomes for patients have improved greatly since.

The 12-week healing rate target for simple ulcers set by NHS Devon Clinical Commissioning Group is 12 per cent and just prior to the outbreak of Covid-19 the NDHT leg ulcer service was achieving 92 per cent. For the service overall NDHT was achieving a 78 per cent heal rate.

Almost all patients asked through the friends and family test would recommend the service – a fact mentioned by the judges.

Wendy Finch, community nurse team manager, said: “We are absolutely delighted the community nurses, and all those involved in the leg service, have been given this accolade.

“They have worked extremely hard to make the clinics a success, and achieve amazing outcomes for patients. I am particularly proud of all the link nurses who have shown a huge amount of dedication and passion for lower limb care in each of the clinics. Well done to all!”

Two other teams, the trauma and orthopaedic multidisciplinary team and acute oncology service team, were also shortlisted in the awards.