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22 June 2018

Bristol nurse wins award for helping heart patients with deadly genetic condition


A nurse at the University Hospitals of Bristol Foundation Trust has been named as the winner of a British Heart Foundation (BHF) Alliance Award.

Lisa Gritzmacher was presented with an award for leadership and engagement at the annual British Cardiovascular Society conference in Manchester. She was recognised for her work to improve the diagnosis and support for people with familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) - a genetic condition that people at high risk of a heart attack.

FH causes a person to have dangerously high cholesterol. If left untreated it can lead to a person developing heart disease at an early age.

Over the past 4 years, Lisa has helped develop testing services across University Hospitals Bristol NHS Trust, North Bristol NHS Trust, and the Royal United Hospital Bath NHS Trust. She has also counselled patients and their families about FH following a diagnosis.

The BHF Alliance awards are judged in two separate stages by a panel of cardiology and healthcare experts who rate nominations on several categories, including how teams and individuals have gone above and beyond the basic requirements of their role.

Simon Gillespie, chief executive of the BHF, said: "I'd like to congratulate Lisa for her well-deserved win. Lisa's passion and motivation is apparent to all those working with her. Because of her sustained hard work and dedication Lisa is helping to save lives and ensure that people are receiving the support and advice they need."

"Everyone in the BHF is rightly proud of the staff across the UK who provide patients living with cardiovascular disease the best possible care, and I'm delighted the BHF Alliance Awards thank and recognise the people who work in or support those services."

Lisa Gritzmacher, FH clinical specialist nurse, said "I am honoured to receive this award from the BHF.

"There is no cure for FH, but it can be treated successfully which is why I feel so passionate about identifying and helping people who have this condition.

"We are constantly striving to innovate and drive the service forward and it's incredibly rewarding to know that this work is so valued."

The BHF Alliance is a free membership scheme which provides learning and development opportunities for healthcare professionals who work with people affected by, or at risk of, cardiovascular disease. For more information visit