Alex Penfold on Youth Mental Health Day 2023: Insights from a Mental Health Nurse and...
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PG Dip Advanced Occupational Therapy, BSc Occupational Therapy
I qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 2014 and specialised in the field of adult physical disability. My areas of specialism include orthopaedics, general medicine, rehabilitation, palliative care, dementia & elderly care. Through my extensive clinical experience, I have developed expert clinical knowledge that enables me to support patients with multiple, complex co-morbidities, often with challenging social and/or domestic situations.
In my occupational therapy career, I developed an interest in palliative and end of life care and have experience leading end of life discharge planning. I have led on advanced care planning for chronically or critically ill patients and approach these sensitively taking into account the physical, cognitive and psychological functioning of the patient, whilst also being mindful of the family, friends and caregiver distress regarding the situation. I work hard to maintain positive working dynamics between the patient, their family and the supporting team. This can be challenging when the person lacks mental capacity to make their own decisions or has fluctuating mental capacity.
I have gained experience in private sector domiciliary care and the NHS, and worked alongside social care. I have developed a thorough understanding of the patient pathway and rehabilitation. I approach assessments as an opportunity to learn from the patient about how best I can integrate their values and priorities into an intervention plan that support them to achieve their goals within an appropriate timeframe.
In addition, to Expert Witness work with Somek and Associates, I continue to work as an occupational therapist in the Bath Reablement Team.
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.