Thursday 14th October 2021 is Allied Health Professionals Day
Today we are celebrating National Allied Health Professionals day.
Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) are the third largest healthcare workforce in the NHS, with 14 professions making up AHPs.
National AHPs day takes place each year on 14 October to shine a spotlight on AHPs across the country, and inspire the future generations of AHPs. This is our opportunity to shine a spotlight on the Physiotherapist, Occupational Therapists, Drama Therapists, Podiatrists, Dietitians and Orthoptists who make a difference every day.
Two of our AHPs talk about their careers and experiences.
Alison Jamson, Quality Improvement Project Lead
"I am a registered occupational therapist. The skills and expertise gained within that vocation have formed the backbone of my career. The essential skill set applied in all settings remains that based upon the occupational therapy professional standards.
I worked as a clinician and leader of mental health services for many years and then moved into the clinical governance and quality improvement field, more latterly within commissioning.
My role involves working with providers and other commissioners to improve overall quality of health services across Northamptonshire. This includes reviewing pathways of care, monitoring and providing assurance about the quality of services.
I also undertake quality visits to the full spectrum of providers, using analytical and sound clinical judgement skills when investigating and making recommendations following clinical concerns, complaints and serious incidents. I am also support the development of local policy and strategy to improve quality outcomes for patients, as well as writing and presenting Board level reports to provide assurance about quality of care being provided and making recommendations as required to improve quality of care.”
Prakash Pote, Head of Continuing Healthcare, Personal Health Budgets and Individual Funding Requests
“I started my career in the NHS as a Rotational Physiotherapist in an Acute Hospital going through Medical, Surgical, Orthopaedic wards and Intensive care unit. These rotations form the foundations of being a competent assessor of physical issues affecting a person’s ability to manage daily functions such as getting in and out bed/chair, using hands for self-caring and dexterity tasks, standing, walking and being a productive member of the society.
It prepared me for my later roles in specialist Multiple Sclerosis Unit which conducted very important research in fatigue management, use of certain MS drugs and managing patients as one stop clinic. I then managed a dedicated Stroke unit in one of the busiest London hospitals, followed by another challenging role as Vestibular rehab specialist. This role opened my horizons to working with world renowned clinicians and in fact teaching international medical staff who came in to observe how a one stop balance clinic works and the role of Physio’s in it.
This was followed by a stint in community rehab and then my most challenging role as Frailty Practitioner working in the front end of A&E. In many ways it was a pioneering role to explore how a therapist assessing patients coming in via ambulances can help in addressing their issues, managing the patient flow better, reduce pressure on A&E waiting times and improving patient care while reducing overall length of stay. I am happy to say that my role achieved all the goals and I also ended up teaching medical staff about how to identify different causes of falls. It was extremely rewarding but at the same time exhausting as I worked 6 days a week for over one and half year.
I then started in much more management focused roles such as Neuro Navigator for North West London, which focused on improving rehab patient pathways through acute and specialist units, improving care as well as gaining financial efficiencies. At the end of this role, I was invited by a CCG to lead a project involving joint health and Social care team to manage intermediate care pathways, and at the same time I ended up leading the discharge service for Imperial Healthcare on interim basis. This role was followed by full transition to CCG world as Personal Health Budget service lead and subsequently as Continuing Healthcare Transformation and Delivery Lead for North West London.
All these previous roles have helped me tremendously in my current role as Head of Continuing Healthcare, Personal Health budget and Individual Funding Requests. I am able to help my clinical assessors in understanding some of intricacies of assessing complex patients, while leading transformation of the service so that it meets all the NHSE prescribed Quality requirements, is financially efficient while being equitable and a beacon of good practice. I am very proud of my team and their dedication to improving healthcare experience of patients who require expert physical and mental health interventions.”
There are 14 professions which make up AHPs including:
- Art Therapists
- Drama therapists
- Music therapists
- Occupational therapists
- Operating Department Practitioners
- Prosthetists and Orthotists
- Speech and language therapists
To find out more about National AHPs day and the role of AHPs visit: www.england.nhs.uk/ahp/ahps-day