Spotlight on: Remote Physiotherapy from The Nerve Injury Clinic

Unite Professionals is committed to providing people who have sustained serious injuries with effective, individualised rehabilitation with the aim to ensure they can regain the best possible standard of living.

In this unprecedented time, our clients are currently facing physical, cognitive and emotional challenges associated with not attending their usual therapy sessions. In light of this, Unite Professionals is working with physiotherapists who are able to offer remote physiotherapy.

Claire Downs, who runs The Nerve Injury Clinic (NIC), has transitioned rapidly in order to offer remote physiotherapy to ensure that our clients’ physical and psychological progress is maintained and that they can continue their rehabilitation path during these difficult times.

The NIC is committed to providing high quality physiotherapy to clients with neurological or complex presentations. The current “lockdown” situation is resulting in these clients being unable to access their usual NHS and community services, groups or gyms.

In light of this, NIC is providing alternative methods of physiotherapy delivery. It is important to prevent physical deterioration, the loss of recent functional gains, weight gain, deconditioning, loss of motivation and deterioration in mood as well as limiting stagnation.

The NIC is offering the following remote services:

For existing patients, they can provide regular phone calls to patients to review their progress and advise upon home programs including balance, range of movement (ROM) and strengthening exercises, stretches, posture advice and pain management. This is done via various platforms such as Face time, WhatsApp video, Zoom or Skype so that the patient can demonstrate their movement and function. Specific guidance can then be provided with regards to their home program, both independently and with their carer. This will include advice upon number of repetitions of exercises, frequency of exercise and use of equipment. These regular remote interventions will help to maintain patients’ motivation.

For new patients, the NIC can provide an initial phone or video call interview with the patient and/or carer to identify their problems and a treatment program can then be established. The questioning subjective part of the assessment will be very detailed and important in light of the limited objective part of the assessment. The information gained will guide advice as to how the client can alter their day to incorporate therapeutic tasks into activities of daily living (ADL) and their routine. Recommendations will be made as to equipment required, eg. FitBit, exercise bike, weights, measuring devices such as goniometers, etc.

The NIC is also on hand to provide frequent communication with the case manager, a vital aspect of their service, either via phone or email.

“Although this is a far from ideal physiotherapy service, it is better than waiting for the current COVD-19 situation to resolve and then clients being faced with deterioration, new problems and having lost motivation,” Claire from the Nerve Injury Clinic has said.

Claire will coordinate client consent of digital communication platform in advance of the session and all client data can be exchanged via Egress secure email. She aims to see each client within two days of receiving instruction and is available for appointments Monday – Friday from 9am to 5pm.

Case managers with suitable clients can arrange a remote physiotherapy appointment by emailing Claire.downs@hotmail.co.uk or ringing Claire on 07940 950 390.