Kate Granger Compassionate Care

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Purpose and History

HIMSS is honored to continue the legacy of Kate Granger by promoting and recognizing outstanding compassionate care. The original campaign—which included awards and the #hellomynameis social media campaign—was created by the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) and Dr. Kate Granger in 2013 while Kate was terminally ill, to raise awareness and recognize people and organizations that have delivered care with compassion at its heart. Kate sadly passed away in July 2016, but her legacy continues, with the continued support of Kate’s widower, Chris Pointon. We believe she would be proud of how far her message has traveled. For the next step in this journey, we are delighted to introduce to you Compassion Across Borders

Compassion Across Borders

The campaign is now trans-Atlantic and aims to highlight and share examples of initiatives that improve patient care and utilize technology to enhance the patient experience. HIMSS believes that compassionate care has no borders, and that sharing these examples can inspire and encourage others to replicate small initiatives that impact quality of care and patient experience.

As information and technology become increasingly recognized as pivotal tools to improve quality, safety, cost-effectiveness and access to outstanding care, HIMSS is committed to ensuring a high-touch/high-tech relationship between clinicians and patients.

Kate Granger’s Story

In 2011, while working as a junior doctor in a British hospital, 29-year-old Kate Granger was diagnosed with a rare type of abdominal sarcoma: desmoplastic small-round-cell tumor. The prognosis was terminal, and the course of action was palliative chemotherapy to prolong her life. She was given months, not years, to live.

As Kate embarked on her treatment, for the first time she experienced what it was like to be a patient in a busy hospital. She was shocked by the lack of compassion from the clinicians treating her. In particular, she objected to being talked about as “bed nine” and not by her name. She was astonished that doctors and nurses would start doing complex and intimate medical procedures, such as fitting a line for chemotherapy, without first introducing themselves.

Kate responded by taking action. First, she started a social media campaign with #hellomynameis. Kate opened the conversation about dying; she began talking about how she was planning a good death. She said she would live-tweet her death via #deathbedlive.

Kate surprised everyone and lived for five more years, during which she qualified as a consultant in elderly medicine; became a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE); received the 2015 New Year Honours for services to the NHS and improving care; wrote two books about being a patient and living with terminal cancer; and raised more than £250,000 for the Yorkshire Cancer Centre.

As momentum for #hellomynameis grew, Kate launched an annual award recognizing compassionate care in NHS hospitals, primary care, and community and residential settings, with categories for individuals, teams and entire organizations. HIMSS believes this important component of healthcare should be acknowledged year-round, so the annual award was converted into a campaign that shares stories from our members around the globe.

This is Kate’s story. What’s yours?

HIMSS would love to hear your stories about compassionate care and outstanding high-touch/high-tech relationships between clinicians and patients. In order to raise awareness, we will publish some of the most touching stories here and across our media channels.

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2020 Recipients

Individual Nurse - Europe

Dorthe Nielson
Professor of Vulnerability, Migrant Health Clinic
Odense University Hospital, Denmark

Individual Midwife

Pety Zaprianova
Maternity Matron
University Hospital St. George, Plovdiv, Bulgaria

The Team

"High Tech + High Touch Project"
Cascais Hospital

Led by: Dulce Goncalces
Chief Nursing Officer
Cascais Hospital/President of Nursing Council
Lusíadas Saduladskude Group, Portugal

The Best Use of Innovation

“The Mobile Hospice Unit”
Zaans Medical Center, Zaandam, Netherlands

Led by Karin Eikenaar
Palliative Consultant Nurse
Zaans Medical Center, Zaandam

Individual Nurse - North America

Cara Martino, MSN, RN
Manager of Enterprise Business Intelligence
Jefferson Health


The views and opinions expressed in this content or by commenters are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of HIMSS or its affiliates.

Individual Nurse Finalists

Associate Professor of migrant health
Odense University Hospital

Dorthe is an Inspirational leader and expert clinical teacher in migrant and refugee healthcare. She conducts research focused on intercultural nursing and translating it into a more compassion-oriented nursing practice for vulnerable migrant patients across Denmark.

Registered Nurse
Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

In an act of extraordinary compassion, Daniel organised a marriage ceremony for his end of life patient and her partner on her hospital ward, with only a few hours notice (and a Haribo sweet as a ring!) The patient passed away peacefully a few hours later; with the help of Daniel, her last wishes were respected.  

Individual Nurse Finalists

Maternity Matron
University Hospital "University Hospital "St. George” Plovdiv

Pety is described as the, “mother” of midwifery in Bulgaria. She has created an online education & mentoring programme to standardise training for midwives across Bulgaria and created the first midwifery support Facebook page and online information support line for mothers to inform and connect. She also arranged virtual consultations for mothers during the pandemic. Her contribution to compassionate maternal care in Bulgaria is unparalleled.

FGM specialised midwife
University Hospitals Bristol
NHS Trust

Alison is one of the first FGM specialist midwives supporting women from across the UK to prepare for pregnancy and birth, manage complications and achieve natural births following FGM. She is an advisor to midwives from across the UK and has created specialist training for midwives on recognising and managing the perinatal period for women with FGM.

Team or Organisation Finalists

Chief Nursing Officer
Cascais Hospital  President -Nursing Council, Lusíadas Saduladskude Group


Dulce is deemed the “mother" of the internationally famous High-Care project (high technology+high touch) which began in 2015 and is still ongoing with the nursing team. The project introduces technology to improve patient quality of care and safety while encouraging and prioritising high contact with patients and increasing the human component in nursing care.

Head of Midwifery
South Warwickshire
NHS Foundation Trust


The Continuity of Carer (CoC) model ensures each woman has a named midwife providing the majority of her care. Building relationships with women is at the heart of our model; personalising care to support her choices. Virtual support groups further enhance this relational continuity and foster peer support amongst women. The COC model provides compassionate, safe, kind and trusted care.

Best use of Innovation Finalists

Palliative Consultant Nurse
Zaans Medical Center


The mobile hospice unit is a new way to give patients and their family a warm and comforting environment to receive care during end stage illness. The mobile hospice unit is offered to any patient who requires palliative care and wants to spend time with their family in a supportive and compassionate space.

Clinical Lead for Social Care
National Care Forum


SNOMED-CT is a clinical coding language adopted by a huge number of organisations internationally, giving a standardised language to health and care records. By using this coding language across more settings we can join up care more effectively, and ensure that care we provide is truly informed, individualised, and above all else – compassionate.