Marianna Płotast, a nurse with Diaverum Poland, has been doubly distinguished at the Queen Silvia Nursing Award, a first in the history of the competition.

The Queen Silvia Nursing Award  is an annual, international competition established in 2013 with the aim to effect positive change, growth, innovation and excellence in the field of nursing, especially geriatric nursing. Scholarships are awarded across seven countries: Sweden, Finland, Brazil, Germany, Lithuania, USA (University of Washington), and Poland. It is run by Swedish Care International, the world's leading institution specialising in elderly and dementia care, and is supported by Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden.

Supported by the Polish Minister of Health and the Supreme Chamber of Nurses and Midwives, nurses and nursing students from across Poland had the chance to take part in this sixth edition of the QSNA competition. Marianna’s entry impressed the judging committees and event partners, so much so she was awarded both recognitions available to eligible candidates.

Mariola Łodzińska, Vice President of the Supreme Chamber of Nurses and Midwives, commented: “All members of the Competition Committee, including myself, rated Marianna's idea very highly. Marianna is a great ambassador for nursing. You can see that she derives a lot of joy from the work she does. For us, it is a great joy that the younger generation focuses on the other person and sees their needs”.

Marianna was awarded for her 'AAC in Dementia' idea, that covers the use of pictorial communication between health centre staff and seniors. Strategies called augmentative and alternative communication, often abbreviated as AAC, are all ways of enabling people with complex communication needs to convey and receive messages. They include processes that supplement or replace natural speech or writing, with the aim of maximising their users' communication skills, which are essential for effective communication and social functioning in everyday life.

Commenting on her award-winning study, Marianna had this to say: “I came here with the idea of creating a safe space for patients with dementia when they are hospitalised. I have this overwhelming feeling that a patient who is admitted to hospital, diagnosed with dementia or not, is often inundated with all sorts of information and doesn't always know how to navigate this”.

She added: “I would like to help such a patient by giving them a plan of their hospital routine and what they will encounter, so that they can return to it at a time that is convenient for them, when the emotions associated with being admitted to hospital have subsided”.

Please join us in congratulating Marianna on this important recognition.

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