Somek & Associates' Alison Somek, MD, Jessica Thurston, Chief Operating Officer, and Amy...
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BA (Hons) Health Studies, Grad Dip Physiotherapy
I qualified as a physiotherapist in 1989 and completed a range of core rotations in the NHS. I studied for a BA Hons degree in Health studies soon after qualifying and I became interested in working in early rehabilitation of amputees. In 2009, I specialised in the prosthetic rehabilitation of amputees.
I have extensive experience of working with amputees; from the post-operative stage through to discharge from prosthetic rehabilitation. During my career I have treated all levels of lower limb amputations including high level amputations of the hip and bilateral amputees. I also have some experience of rehabilitating war veteran amputees who may suffered multiple injuries and in children supplied with running blades.
Currently, I work in an NHS limb centre. I have an important role within the multi-disciplinary team (MDT) and regularly attend team meetings where complex patients are discussed. In these cases, I evaluate a range of medical, cognitive and social issues relating to the patient and describe the impact on the patient’s rehabilitation. Furthermore, I have taken a lead in the provision of microprocessor knees. This involves patient assessment using various outcome measures, evaluating changes and presenting my findings to the MDT.
I often use teaching skills for training with staff and students. I am qualified as a key mover for the manual handling of patients. In 2019, I organised and ran a study day for community staff which involved enlisting speakers to do presentations and running practical workshops.
I am very keen on improving standards of care for patients and I strive to deliver services in line with national British Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Amputee Rehabilitation (BACPAR) guidelines and local policies. In working towards this goal, I have completed an audit on standards of care and compared the results with national guidelines. I make sure my staff are skilled and competent to do their job. In addition, I have contributed to the BACPAR guidelines in this specialist field in providing consensus.
In 2014 I had a paper published in the BACPAR journal and in addition, I have written many patient information leaflets in easy-to-understand language.
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.