Award for health worker Nikki recognises her heroic flood care

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A HEALTH worker who braved the elements to help patients during the summer floods has been named an NHS Hero.

Nikki Widdup, of the upper valley community mental health team, was nominated for her efforts in making sure a vulnerable and housebound patient was safe and warm when the deluge struck in June.

She also returned the following day to help with the clean-up process.

Nikki said: “I had been to visit a patient and realised that the river was quite high.

“When I left, my son rang me to say it was getting really bad in Todmorden.

“I knew I had to go to her to make sure she was safe.

“When I got to where she lived, it was four feet deep in water.

“I asked one of the home care girls to come with me. I wanted to make sure she was safe, warm and dry.

“I waited for the police and fire service to come.

“The fire service were absolutely brilliant. They came out later in the night and walked me back through the water.

“I went back the day after. It was such a mess and I helped her with the clean-up. The lady is absolutely fine. We got a lot of support from the flood relief team.”

Nikki thanked the home care team and everybody else who helped out.

She received her award in a special ceremony at Dean Clough, Halifax, presented by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust chairman Ian Black.

“I was quite proud really,” she said.

“I don’t do it for the recognition but it’s nice.”

The NHS Heroes initiative was introduced by the former health secretary Andrew Lansley to recognise staff who go the extra mile, and to mark 64 years of the NHS.