Jessica Thurston, Chief Operating Officer at Somek and Associates, has recently had an article...
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BSc (Hons) Occupational Therapy
I am an experienced Occupational Therapist with expertise in providing advanced specialist assessments and clinical interventions for individual patients (adults and children). I have a special interest in those who have acquired neurological conditions or complex physical and / or learning disabilities. I have extensive experience working with those with complex postural difficulties and who require access to specialist equipment to meet their needs. In addition, I work with clients with spinal cord injury, amputation, orthopaedic injuries including upper and lower limb injuries. I have compiled many reports which outline therapy and predicted therapy needs.
Since qualifying in 1995, my work in the NHS has included inpatient and intermediate rehabilitation, including neurology, orthopaedics and hand rehabilitation. I have also worked for paediatric charities, a private head injury rehabilitation unit and Social Services. My role has focused on individual assessment, treatment plans and co-ordination of care packages. I have worked as an independent clinician since 2008 assisting clients a range of therapy needs.
My input has included initial needs assessments, discharge planning, commencing, monitoring and reviewing MDT input , liaising with building project management teams and overseeing adaptations and linking with the litigation teams as required. My case management role includes cases instructed on a joint basis and by the claimant. I currently have six cases that are progressing to settlement, each at differing time scales within the process. The remaining cases are settled cases or funded on a private basis.
I am currently working across the following different roles:
• Breakthrough Case Management, where I work as case manager providing case management services for adults and children who have brain injury and / or complex physical and psychological disabilities. This identifies the services which will enable the client to live in a manner as close as possible to the lifestyle they would have had if the injury had not occurred.
• Elm Therapy Services, working as an independent occupational therapist for adults and children with complex disabilities. This role includes direct treatment, equipment provision and advice regarding adaptive housing and access to education.
Within my care expert role, I hold a portfolio of both Claimant and Defendant instructed cases. I have experience in compiling medico-legal reports since 2008. 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. I have completed joint statements and attended court on a number of occasions.
British Association of Occupational Therapists