Somek & Associates' Jessica Thurston, Head of Medico-legal Operations and...
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MSc, MSCP, Dip Physiotherapy
I qualified as a Chartered Physiotherapist in 1981 and have specialised in the field of paediatrics and physical disability. I have worked with babies, children and young adults with disabilities. I am Bobath trained to an advanced level, and have experience in orthotic management and clinical gait analysis in children with cerebral palsy. I was employed as a Senior Lecturer in Physiotherapy at the University of Cumbria (formerly St Martins College) for 17 years until December 2019. Within this role I had regular contact with practice settings and clinicians and taught paediatric neurology at BSc and postgraduate levels.
From January 2019 until September 2021, I was lead physiotherapist at a further education college for young people with special needs. My main responsibilities were the assessment and physical management of young people who had cerebral palsy and other learning disabilities. I was involved in manual handling, equipment provision and led exercise and hydrotherapy sessions. I currently work as a private physiotherapist and have a small caseload of children and young people with physical development needs.
I also work as a volunteer to deliver hydrotherapy to adults with a range of conditions.
I joined Somek & Associates in 1998 as a physiotherapy expert and have written many medico-legal reports relating to clinical negligence, with particular reference to children with cerebral palsy and young adults with global learning disabilities. I have been instructed by Claimant, Defendant and as a Single Joint Expert. I have undergone training in the medico-legal process and am fully aware of my responsibilities under the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) pertaining to Expert Witnesses.
2007 PGCE in HE: University of Cumbria
2005 MSc in Rehabilitation Studies: Lancaster University
Dissertation: Therapy approaches for the primary school child who has Cerebral Palsy 1981 Diploma in Physiotherapy (Leeds School of Physiotherapy / CSP)