Nicola Heaps, one of our nursing experts, appeared in court in July this year. The case related to...
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BSc Honours Speech and Language Therapy
Since qualifying as a Speech and Language Therapist in 2008, I have predominantly worked in specialist brain injury rehabilitation units and community rehabilitation.
During my career I have worked at the Royal Hospital for Neurodisability, where they accept patients nationally with severe and complex brain injury, including disorders of consciousness. I also have experience in the National Hospital for Neurology/Neurosurgery which is a national centre for excellence in neurological rehabilitation. I have extensive experience with all types of acquired brain injury and progressive neurological conditions from initial differential diagnosis to rehabilitation into the community.
My latter experience and current position involves integrating people under 65 back into the community following an acquired brain injury with a focus on returning to work and self management.
I have highly specialist skills in assessment and treatment of all swallowing and communication disorders including; tracheostomy management, videofluoroscopy assessment, cognitive communication disorder, aphasia, dysarthria and specific skills in alternative and augmentative communication. My clinical reasoning skills are advanced and thorough.
In addition, I am the Alternative Augmentative Communication (AAC) lead for my Trust and regularly provide recommendations and costings for communication aids.
I am an experienced supervisor and leader to other Speech and Language Therapists and work as part of a multidisciplinary team. I recently attended leadership training over the course of a year focusing on social innovation and making changes in the NHS from a clinical level.
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 the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) pertaining to expert witness and can provide clear, concise, and timely communication both written and spoken.