The following article is a personal reflection on becoming an OT expert witness, by...
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MSc Physiotherapy, BSc Physiotherapy
I qualified as a physiotherapist in 1994 in India and subsequently went on to gain an MSc with orthopaedics as the major subject. I have worked in various roles including the NHS, private hospitals, and running my own private clinic.
Since 2011 I have been working as the lead therapist in amputation and prosthetic rehabilitation at the Northampton Enablement Centre. My role involves providing expertise on prosthetic rehabilitation and advisory services to patients, carers, other physiotherapists, GP's, consultants, and other healthcare professionals.
I assess new patients as to their suitability for a prosthesis and prosthetic rehabilitation in the primary clinic. Being the only physiotherapist in the centre, I provide physiotherapy services for patients undergoing prosthetic rehab and other services that would normally be undertaken by nursing, occupational therapy, and counselling staff.
I have carried out various audits to highlight service needs and possible improvement to service levels. My most recent audit was to benchmark outpatient amputee services in the county to highlight the diversity in care offered to this group of patients.
I have been involved in clinical supervision and teaching of physiotherapy students and nursing staff.
I am an active member of weekly clinical governance meetings and highlight any risk management issues to the centre manager. I have always taken responsibility for my learning needs and used reflective practise to improve my diagnostic and evaluation skills.
In addition, I am fluent in both Hindi and Marathi.
I accept instructions from both claimant and defendant solicitors and insurers. I have undergone formal training in the medico-legal process and am fully aware of my responsibilities under Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) pertaining to expert witnesses.