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Beatrice Akyeampong and her daughter Dr. Vanessa Apea - Ghanaian Nurse and Doctor duo, champions of reducing health inequalities

As mother and daughter Beatrice Akyeampong and Dr Vanessa Apea (nee Akyeampong) share many things in common but chief among them is their passionate work around reducing health inequality. 

Beatrice came to the UK from Ghana in 1967 to study nursing at Medway Hospital. Her nursing career took her to Bishop Stortford and Chadwell Heath before settling at King George Hospital where she enjoyed a long and successful nursing career driven by the want to ensure equitable access to care for all of her patients, no matter their background. 

Beatrice’s daughter Vanessa was born in The Royal London Hospital where she later trained as a specialist registrar and in 2011 was appointed as a Consultant in Sexual Health and HIV Medicine, having obtained her Master of Public Health from Harvard University as a Fulbright scholar that same year.  

Inspired by values strongly instilled by her mother, Vanessa is passionate about reducing barriers to engagement in healthcare and has made this the central focus of her clinical work and has developed a large number of initiatives designed to aid healthcare access. She has been pivotal in setting up faith based HIV testing projects in the East-end of London and also in winning a bid to run a Sexual Health mobile clinic - taking services to those who need them and would otherwise not access this specialist care. She has also set up a multidisciplinary ‘Link’ HIV clinic along with her social work, psychology and specialist nursing colleagues in order to facilitate reengagement of those who find attending HIV care challenging and as such has become a national expert on this subject. 

Vanessa is member of the medical board of NAZ, a charity dedicated to improving the Sexual Health and HIV outcomes of BAME people, with whom she recently worked on Community Conversations, a film made to raise key issues of HIV prevention in Black African communities where conventional approaches to HIV eduction have not worked. 

Dr Apea is now Clinical Lead for Sexual Health at Barts Health NHS Trust and has recently led and won a bid to run Sexual Health Services in the London Boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Newham and Waltham Forest, the central ethos of the model is to allow patient choice and aid their access to world class Sexual Health care through Centres of Excellence and multiple satellite clinics spread across each of the boroughs. 

Over the years these two champions of reducing health inequalities have helped countless patients to better navigate their healthcare journey and inspired their colleagues to do the same. Beatrice and Vanessa, we cannot thank you enough. 

edited on Apr 27, 2018 by Andy Williams

olayinka bajomo 10 months ago

Well done Andy for making this joint nomination, and I congratulate Beatrice and Vanessa for the good work they have done so far.
I do hope and wish the duo success with this nomination that they will be the WINNER

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Dr Stuart Flanagan 10 months ago

Congratulations Beatrice and Vanessa on your well deserved nomination! You are both true stars of the NHS and have done so much to ensure our healthcare services reach out to those in need, breaking down barriers and social stigmas in doing so. Thank you both!

PS reading around this website it's humbling to see all the fantastic work being done - well done to all!

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Andrew Kelso 10 months ago

Amazing daughter - can only imagine the calibre of her mother

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Sarah Finer 10 months ago

Ghana has given the UK and NHS an amazing gift with this awesome duo! Vanessa, since our early days on the wards together at Newham in 2004, you've had an incredible impact on patients, colleagues and friends. Mrs Akyeampong, although we all know Vanessa to be the amazing individual she is, no-one is in any doubt that she has inherited all of your superpowers (well, except cooking) and that you are the inspiration! I so hope you win this award and you can both continue to inspire many people in the NHS and make a huge difference to the health of people in the UK and Ghana.

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Sarahe 10 months ago

Well done Andy for this. Crossing fingers for you 2 beauties

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Heather Noble 10 months ago

Vanessa, your combination of humour, dedication and energy is inspiring - what an amazing leader. Beatrice - there must be a lot of grateful people you have nursed over the years, and we're still grateful for the way you've nursed Vanessa. Fingers crossed for you both.

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BMH 10 months ago

Deserved nomination

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BMH 10 months ago

Deserved nomination

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Alwen Williams 10 months ago

Vanessa is an inspirational clinical leader and lovely to see this joint nomination.

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PinkyM 10 months ago

Congratulations - Beatrice and Vanessa, so well deserved nomination. I wish you the very best of luck

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Oyebanji Adewumi 10 months ago

Remarkable champions!

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rosalind boi-dsane 10 months ago

Congratulations Beatrice and Vanessa. You truly have made Ghana PROUD!
Best wishes with the nominations

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Amy Buckingham 10 months ago

This idea has been advanced to the current phase

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shaista shaikh 9 months ago

Well done Vanessa

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