Nicola Heaps, one of our nursing experts, appeared in court in July this year. The case related to...
- To speak to one of the team, an expert, or for more information please contact us
Contact our office
Make an enquiry
BSc (Hons) Speech Sciences
I qualified as a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT) in 2003 from University College London and have spent my career specialising in neurological rehabilitation. I have gained significant experience assessing and managing adults with complex communication and swallowing difficulties as a result of acquired or traumatic brain injury, Cerebrovascular Accident and complex neurological conditions.
I have specialist clinical knowledge for formal and informal assessment of speech, language, and swallowing disorders, and am skilled in the subsequent development and delivery of therapy management plans which may be impairment, activity or participation based. I have experience of working in a variety of settings including acute hospitals, nursing homes, stroke rehabilitation units, outpatient & community services, and within a specialist brain injury inpatient neurorehabilitation centre. I have worked with clients who have presented with a range of functioning - from those with severe global language and cognitive difficulties to those returning to their vocation or education, forming effective therapeutic relationships. This has included working closely with family, carers, support workers and independent therapists.
I have completed postgraduate training including MSc modules in assessment and management of adults with dysphagia, and cognitive-linguistic communication disorders in traumatic brain injury: Advanced theory and practice. I am currently a student on the Masters in Research (Communication Disorders) course at Plymouth Marjon University (part-time, ending September 2019), with the focus of my studies on neurorehabilitation services available to adults with traumatic brain injury within the South West of England. I am a visiting lecturer at this University for undergraduate SLT students on the subject of neuorehabilitation for adults with brain injury.
Clinically I divide my time between working as the lead Highly Specialist SLT within an NHS outpatient neurorehabilitation service based in Bristol, and in private practice where I am a partner in Arbor Neurorehabilitation Services and lead as the Senior SLT within this Bristol-based service. I am actively involved in regular CPD and provide clinical supervision to junior therapists and SLT students from Plymouth Marjon University. I am the chair of the South West Brain Injury Clinical Excellence Network, and organise two specialist study days a year for SLTs working with adults with brain injury in the South West.
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 Witnesses.