Independent Occupational Therapist and Case Manager
I have been in independent practice as an occupational therapist and case manager since 2000, with more than 22 years' clinical occupational therapy experience.
I specialise in case management, complex rehabilitation and return to work cases. My scope of practice covers assessment, rehabilitation and case management of clients with major trauma including spinal injuries, acquired brain injury, amputations, multiple fractures, and chronic pain. Rehabilitation commonly includes specialist physiotherapy and other paramedical interventions, home and workplace evaluations and adaptations, assistive technology, powered and lightweight wheelchairs, and vehicles. My clients range in background from manual workers to self-employed professionals, and range in age from teenagers to early-retired people and older.
I am experienced in working in a multi-disciplinary team with medical and paramedical professionals, social workers, disability employment advisors, probation officers and mental health teams, solicitors, insurance companies and employers.
- More than twenty years' experience of hands-on assessment and clinical treatment for patients of all ages and with a full range of physical conditions. Thirteen years’ experience of return-to-work rehabilitation and rehabilitation following catastrophic injuries.
- Client conditions have included spinal injuries, acquired brain injuries, amputations, multiple fractures, chronic pain, serious back conditions and joint fusions resulting from a wide variety of work-related accidents and road traffic accidents.
- Specialist expertise in spinal injury rehabilitation, including vented and high-quadriplegic patients. Special interest in assistive technology for highly-dependent patients. Skilled in assessment and provision of powered and lightweight wheelchairs.
- Clients have been from professional, clerical/administrative, skilled manual and unskilled manual backgrounds, and have included both employees and self-employed people.
- Interventions have included managing physical rehabilitation, deploying assistive technology in the home and workplace, pain management coaching and psychological support, and arranging retraining and work placements.
- Strong communicator with a commitment to good quality regular reporting and contact; expertise in building a multi-disciplinary case team; excellent problem-solving skills.
- Experienced in case management and rehabilitation within the insurance and litigation framework, particular experience of working under joint instruction, or as a jointly instructed partner with a client case manager.
- Expert knowledge and skills in restoring a client’s independence in daily living activities including personal care, domestic tasks, and community activities.
- Wide experience of treating patients with complex social and psychiatric histories, and of varied educational attainment. Experienced in working with patients from varied ethnic/cultural backgrounds, including those with limited or no English; experienced in working with a translator when needed.
- Work closely with consultant surgeons and physicians, general medical practitioners, client case managers, other paramedical professionals (nursing/physiotherapy/ speech therapy/dieticians), social workers, probation officers, psychologists, psychiatrists and disability employment advisers.
- I continue to be a director of Independence Works and a supervisor of a small group of OTs within that to promote clinical excellence and professional development.
- Management of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital Occupational Therapy department of 32 staff as Head I OT. Prepared annual business plans and budgets for Spinal Injury Unit (SIU) OT and main OT department. Managed resource/service mix during cost improvement programmes. Planned and managed service improvements.
- Managed team of 12 OT staff on Spinal Injury Unit, including recruitment, motivation, team-building, mentoring/coaching, appraisal, case allocation, in-service training and staff development.
- Participated in the national SIU Head OT’s/PT’s Forum, encouraging inter-unit collaboration. Worked with Aspire (spinal injuries charity) to design National Training Centre on Stanmore campus.
- I continue to participate in peer reviews with my colleagues in Independence Works and offer clinical supervision to six of our members. I also have ongoing clinical supervision from a senior member of our group.
2000 – present
Occupational Therapist and Case Manager (independent practice)
Very experienced as an independent occupational therapist and case manager, focusing on rehabilitation for clients with complex orthopaedic conditions or physical disabilities. My main focus is on major trauma, life changing injuries such as: spinal injuries, amputees and acquired brain injuries. I was runner up in the CMSUK Case Manager of the Year 2014.
1992 – 1999
Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital Trust (RNOHT)
Specialist orthopaedic hospital in Stanmore, Middlesex. Six years' experience of treating spinal injuries, including three years as Head III OT (clinical), Spinal Injury Unit. Rehabilitated numerous ventilated, quadriplegic, and paraplegic patients, and patients with incomplete spinal injuries. Head 1 OT for one year.
1989 – 1990
Northwick Park Hospital
General hospital in Harrow, Middlesex. Senior II, Cardiac rehabilitation (out-patients), CVA, degenerative disorders, head injuries.
1987 – 1989
Royal Victoria Hospital
Teaching hospital, Belfast, Northern Ireland. Basic grade rotational post (6-monthly rotations). Care of elderly (in-patients), Elderly day hospital, Neurology and Neurosurgery, General Medicine and Surgery.
- Certificate in Health Care Management
(University of Hertfordshire) 1997.
- Certificate in Biblical and Mission Studies,
(London Bible College, Northwood) 1991.
- Diploma of the College of Occupational Therapy
(University of Ulster, Jordanstown) 1987.
Continuing professional development, including:
- I continue working to maintain my knowledge of the use of technology related to spinal cord injury in relation to ambulation, recovery and use of computers and assistive technology to improve independence and quality of life.
- I attended the Aspire conference on Assistive Technology Training in October 2016
- ‘Brain Injury - it's a Family Affair - An Afternoon for Case Managers’ March 2016, run by Psychology Chartered.
- ‘Neural Plasticity: its clinical relevance in treatment of spinal cord injury’ March 2016
- I am exploring the use of technology to help severely injured farmers back to farming along with Professor Rob Stutheridge of Agribility.
- I continue as a director of Complex Neurological Consulting.
- Peer review of return to work cases (ongoing annually).
Registrations and memberships:
- The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
- The British Association of Occupational Therapists (BAOT)
- The Case Management Society UK (CMSUK)
- College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section – Independent Practice
- College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section – Work
- Member of the Spinal Injuries Association (SIA)
- Member of Multi-disciplinary Association of Spinal Cord Injury (MASCIP)