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Case management

Care expert provider expanding further nationally

Jacqueline Webb is creating new roles in response to rising demand for its specialist services

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A care expert provider is expanding on the strength of demand for its specialist services, with a recruitment drive underway to bring new healthcare professionals into its national team. 

Jacqueline Webb has delivered expert reports for over 35 years, prepared by a team of leading professionals across the country who work with the business, many of whom are case managers. Each year, around 1,000 reports are produced.

In response to continuing and growing demand for its reports and expertise, Jacqueline Webb is looking to add new associates to its team, with recruitment underway nationally to find new experts.

The business is keen to bring in case managers with experience in catastrophic injury and multi-track claim work, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and nurses with experience of working in the community or with local authorities.

Jacqueline Webb is based in Wiltshire, but the national nature of its work means it is looking to bring in professionals from across the country, with home-based and flexible working arrangements offered.

“There is always demand for what we do, but currently demand is outstripping supply, so we’re keen to bring new experts into the team,” says Aaron McGonigle, Recruitment Manager at Jacqueline Webb.

“We have an associate model, which we find works very well, particularly after the last two years in which flexible and remote working have come very much to the fore. Our work only requires about ten hours per week.

“For clinicians, the work they do for us can add to their day-to-day role, so they can combine their hands-on job with the hands-off task of preparing a report. It can be very complementary to the work they do, and add significant income for them.”

Founded by occupational therapist Jacqueline Webb in 1985, the business has continued to grow and develop from its Salisbury base over the years, and is now a key national player under the leadership of owner/director Doug Lingafelter.

While one of a number of the ‘main players’ in the care expert market, Aaron points to the fact Jacqueline Webb is the one of only a few to solely offer expert work as being a key feature in its offering.

“We do have a very strong reputation which has been built over years, and the quality of our experts is something we’re very proud of,” he says.

“We probably talk to up to 300 potential new experts each year, but likely only take on between ten and 12 – that’s the level of quality we are looking for.

“But for the right people, this is a fantastic opportunity – the associate model gives flexibility, while also having the support from our team, and this is a really supportive environment to work in with a very collaborative approach.

“Our structure is also unique in the marketplace – many others in the field are subsidiaries of a bigger organisation, but we are owned and managed by one director, who is based in our head office.

“This is a time of growth for us and we’re very keen to hear from case managers who may want to learn more about using their expertise in preparing reports.” 

Case management

Case managers should ‘take control’ to secure rehab funding

Case managers urged to ‘get stuck in’ to get the funds for brain injury rehabilitation for their clients

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Case managers have been urged to “take control” when securing funding from insurers for brain injury rehabilitation.

Speaking at Calvert Reconnections’ Zoominar for case managers and solicitors, Bill Braithwaite QC explained how rehabilitation is the most urgent consideration in brain injury cases – but funding is always the biggest obstacle to overcome.

“The client’s treatment and rehabilitation should always come before any litigation,” said Bill. 

“You simply cannot secure top-quality brain injury rehabilitation without proper funding in place. If there’s no money, there’s no rehab.

“Getting the money is the starting point. There are only two ways to get an interim payment – through the insurance company providing it voluntarily or by applying to the court.”

Bill, a trustee at the Lake District Calvert Trust, continued: “An early dialogue between all parties is the best way forward.   

“A reasonable insurer will agree to an interim payment for rehabilitation at a specific unit if they’re provided with solid evidence as to the benefits of the programme.  

“Simply asserting that rehabilitation is necessary is not enough.  

“I’d urge case managers to get stuck in and take an element of control. Don’t take no for an answer, always ask for the reasons why.”

Bill added that applying to the court for an interim payment is “difficult and slow but the only way forward if insurers refuse to co-operate.”

Bill Braithwaite QC was joined on the Zoominar by Sue Reeve, technical claims manager at Aviva, Heather Batey, trustee at the Lake District Calvert Trust and MD of reach and Claire Appleton, head of service at Calvert Reconnections.

Claire said delays in funding had led to brain injury survivors missing out on vital rehabilitation at Calvert Reconnections 

“It’s massively frustrating when we miss that window of opportunity to deliver life-changing outcomes for participants as a result of funding obstacles,” explained Claire.

Calvert Reconnections is a unique residential neuro-rehabilitation centre for people with post-acute ABI, which combines traditional rehab with outdoor therapies. 

The centre delivers cognitive and physical rehabilitation strategies alongside daily living and vocational skills within the local community.

Since Calvert Reconnections opened in June 2021, clients have seen significant progress in terms of physical improvement, personal sense of wellbeing and a return to independent living.

“We deliver individualised rehabilitation opportunities enabling each person to reach their potential while having a different rehabilitation experience,” continued Claire.

“Our programme aims to maximise the participant’s cognitive, social, emotional, physical and psychological well-being facilitating recovery and independence.

“With a view towards life back in the community for each participant we also provide aspects of the rehabilitation programme where needed around self-care and work, with opportunities for increasing self-care skills and work-based placements.”

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Insight

Reaching potential – supporting children through transition

Robyn Ingham, a case manager with ILS Case Management, discusses how to support young people through the stepping stones to their ultimate potential

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From the moment we are born we are learning, developing and achieving. The sky is the limit and each of us goes in a different direction depending on many factors both nature and nurture. 

If we are fulfilling our potential, we can be confident, happy, satisfied, enthusiastic and driven but what happens if there is a disconnect between our potential and our achievements?

For children born with medical difficulties or disability, those who acquire a medical condition or a traumatic injury, or even those who do not get the correct input, support or opportunities, their potential can feel out of reach. 

In my experience this can be very frustrating, demeaning and often very upsetting for a child or young person and their families. I have always felt my role as a case manager is to understand potential and need and then to work with all involved to put in place the best possible support to change that frustration into determination, to change the feeling of failure to a feeling of success, and to change feeling unable to being ‘differently abled.’

Delivering the right support

Robyn Ingham

In order to know what support is required first we must work out what is restricting, limiting, or getting in the way of success. Most importantly we must understand what success feels like and looks like to the individual, not what we think it should or should not look like. 

I have found many barriers, both physical, emotional and situational, that have led to children and young people being unable to reach their potential. 

Like in many aspects of life, the physical barriers are often easier to identify but often require funding to overcome. These may be overcoming physical disability with the use of equipment, extra support or resources, extra therapy and intervention, more opportunities or extra time. 

With clear understanding, excellent assessment, research and funding, some of these barriers can be relatively easily conquered – however, the emotional or situational barriers can be more complex to identify and, in some instances, a real challenge to overcome. 

Potential knows no limits

I have often met parents who have been led (by professionals they have met) to believe that the successes their child might achieve are likely to be low, and they have been encouraged not to have too many hopes and expectations; this breaks my heart, especially if the child is very young. 

I have also met so many parents who have proudly watched their child take steps and say, “the doctors said he would never walk.” They have tears in their eyes as they tell me about a text message that they received from their non-verbal child to say they are hungry, as they then go on to explain that they were told their child will never talk, and don’t get me started on even the most complex young person having a say in their care! 

Walking does not mean without aids in the way the textbook says we should, talking is not the only way to communicate and consent. 

Joy or unhappiness can be relayed in many ways, you just have to look and listen and understand. It is not for us to decide on potential, limits and success, it is for us as professionals to help identify realistic goals, put in place the best possible support and opportunities and as one dad said to me “to allow hope to live.” 

The results can be phenomenal

Belle, is a remarkable 18-year-old young lady who has had to overcome many of these barriers. 

Belle has Dystonic Cerebral Palsy; she is non-verbal and wheelchair dependent BUT none of these aspects define her. What makes her so remarkable is her determination, her drive and her cheeky wit. 

Many people in Belle’s life have tried to put a ceiling on her potential and success, but her parents have always listened to her, believed in her and when necessary advocated for her. This has enabled Belle to be heard, she has grown up being encouraged to make choices for herself and to have a strong and loud voice.

She has developed a strong understanding of her own needs and, if given time, support and equipment, she is perfectly able to set her own goals, accept her own actions and consequences and achieve many successes. 

These have included many opportunities to speak at events, being on TV, achieving GCSEs, attending university and assisting the companies that develop the software she uses. 

Often when a person first meets Belle, they make assumptions based on the way they do things. Belle may use an eye gaze computer to communicate and record her work, and she may use head switches to independently drive her chair, but she is very able and is surpassing her perceived potential – a true example of the sky’s the limit. 

Transition can be tough – for the whole family

It is often at times of transition and change that things can be at their toughest, but these times can also provide a great opportunity to move the goalposts. 

Transition can mean many things, a new home or school, from inpatient to outpatient, from dependent to independent, from parent only care to a team of carers. 

It is my role as a case manager to support families through these transitions and to help identify what the change means for them and their child/young person. The transition is not only felt by the child or young person but can also be extremely stressful for the parents. 

We are often led and, if done correctly, we should be supported to work through the transitions that society impose on us – starting school, moving to secondary school, moving home etc., but it is often at times of independent transition when the gap between a child with additional needs and their peer group can feel enormous. 

When a young child learns to ride a bike without stabilisers, when an older child begins having sleepovers with friends, when a teenager is allowed to go out without a parent; these are times that a child with extra needs can feel left out, less than able or unsuccessful.

Continuing to push the boundaries of what’s possible

In order to support anyone through a transition the most important thing is time. If we identify the transition in advance we can put in place the support, equipment, social stories, visits, opportunities or whatever else is required to make that transition as smooth as possible. 

When the systems we have work, and the professionals involved understand and support the family appropriately, transition can be a stepping stone to further success and raising the level of potential. 

We now live in a society that is supposed to ensure we are all treated equally and have equal opportunities, but for those with disability or extra needs life can feel like a long-distance hurdles race. 

I have often heard that it feels like every stage or transition is ‘another battle,’ ‘another fight’ and another feeling of ‘starting again’ and having to “train” the professionals. 

It should not be like this; we must have standardised ideas and assessments, but we must always remember we are all individuals, we are all different. We must be flexible in what we can offer and provide and work out what is needed for each individual child or young person to succeed. 

Each transition should be bespoke and focus on the individual’s abilities, then the sky really is the limit. 

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Case management

Case managers ‘moving back to in-person rehab’

New research reveals the vast majority are keen to return to face-to-face rather than digital interaction with clients

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The vast majority of brain injury case managers are now moving their clients back to in-person rehabilitation in place of virtual rehabilitation as the sector learns to live with COVID-19, new research has found. 

In a poll of brain injury case managers by Calvert Reconnections, 97 per cent of respondents indicated their preference for in-person rehabilitation wherever possible.

Bill Braithwaite QC, trustee at the Lake District Calvert Trust and Head of Exchange Chambers, said: “I am delighted to see from our recent survey that almost all case managers are moving back to in-person rehabilitation – I’m sure that is one area where virtual is second best for much of the necessary work that goes into a good rehabilitation package. 

“Rehab is based on the patient and family knowing the case manager and clinicians, liking them, and trusting them, and it is more difficult to establish that relationship over video, rather than sitting round with the family having a cup of tea. 

“I very much hope that case managers will now start to look at the wider picture; we’ve seen so much coverage of the benefits of the outdoors, green and comforting landscapes, fresh air, and healthy activity, that the brain injury rehabilitation unit at Calvert Reconnections should be at the top of many case managers’ lists of desirable units, centred as it is round the well-established outdoor activity package already at the Lake District Calvert Trust.”

Heather Batey, managing director at Reach and trustee at the Lake District Calvert Trust, said: ”This is not a surprising outcome from the recent Reconnections poll. 

“Interestingly however, virtual rehabilitation has established its place for milder TBI rehab over the pandemic, which is a progressive and effective approach for this milder client group.  

“The need for in-person rehab – either at home or in a residential facility – for moderate and severe TBI remains key and I have seen over the last few months that case managers are increasingly reviewing their cases and looking at the current options and pathways available. 

“Reconnections is a key example of innovation in this market at this time.”

Since opening in June 2021, Calvert Reconnections has delivered a tailored goal-focused and outcome-based approach to ABI rehabilitation. 

Individual client results have seen significant progress in terms of physical improvement, personal sense of wellbeing and a return to independent living.

The synergies of bringing together proven clinical rehab approaches with a programme of outdoor activities clearly delivers really positive benefits for people with an ABI. 

In recent weeks, participants at Calvert Reconnections have explained how the service is transforming their lives.

Talking about the impact of his stay at Reconnections, Scott said: “I had a serious motorcycle accident involving my bike and a fire engine – and I lost.

“I was left with a serious bleed on the brain, but I’m fighting back.

“I didn’t expect to be able to take part in all the activities but I’ve proved myself wrong.

“Calvert Reconnections has turned my life around.  I feel fitter both mentally and physically.  It’s helping me to live a better life.”

Talking about his recovery, fellow participant Roger added: “After having a stroke following a hip replacement operation, I wanted to get better, quicker – and there’s nowhere better than Calvert Reconnections.

“The team at Reconnections is like a whole new family. In the darkest deepest times, you see all the shining stars.

“I’ve already learnt how to walk again.  Now it’s just a matter of getting fit.”

Calvert Reconnections actively seeks to incorporate a wide range of outdoor activities into each participant’s rehabilitation programme. 

This may range from reflective activities such as fishing, bird watching or a nature walk to higher adventure activities such as horse riding, canoeing, rock-climbing and abseiling – all closely assessed and graded to a person’s interests and functional abilities. 

Importantly, participants are involved in every aspect of the activities they undertake. They complete meaningful tasks, from concept to completion, in a real-world setting.

Claire Appleton, head of service at Calvert Reconnections, said: “The focus on outdoor activities as part of our therapeutic model makes Calvert Reconnections completely unique in the UK. Our service is transforming lives.”

Calvert Reconnections is part of the Lake District Calvert Trust, a charity with 45 years’ experience, delivering outdoor experiences for people with disabilities.

The centre is currently taking referrals. For further information, visit www.calvertreconnections.org.uk

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