A new chair has been appointed by the British Association of Brain Injury and Complex Case Management (BABICM).
Vicki Gilman has taken over at the helm of BABICM, which is the representative body for continued professional advancement of case management and promotes best practice in supporting people with brain injury and complex conditions.
She takes over from Angela Kerr, who steps down after five years in the role at the helm, in what is BABICM’s 25th anniversary year.
“I’m delighted to be BABICM’s new chair in our 25th anniversary year. The organisation has a well-established, powerful and influential voice and we will continue to ensure that the needs of people with brain injury and complex medical conditions are recognised and met,” says Vicki.
An experienced case manager, health entrepreneur and clinical specialist neurophysiotherapist, Vicki is currently managing director of Social Return Case Management, a company she established over six years ago.
She qualified in physiotherapy at King’s College, London and completed a Master of Science degree in neurorehabilitation at Brunel University.
For several years, Vicki worked in a specialised military neurorehabilitation unit, treating adults with brain injury, spinal cord injury, and other complex conditions.
Vicki coordinated and worked clinically in NHS and independent sector multidisciplinary community teams treating people with neurological conditions, and she was an expert witness in brain and spinal cord injury for over 20 years.
Her work in a multidisciplinary team steered her into case management, and for six years Vicki was on the BABICM Council and chaired its training events group, returning last year to BABICM Council for a preparatory year before stepping into the role as chair.
“These are challenging and changing times for everyone in healthcare and beyond,” continues Vicki.
“As case managers we need to be flexible but quick to respond to new developments and ways of working, ensuring the best possible outcomes for our clients.
“As an organisation, BABICM has to be responsive to the needs of our members; we must ensure that they receive the training and support required to maintain our high professional standards and to deliver best-practice services.”
Awards to recognise role of case management during pandemic
An awards event is being held to recognise and reward the role of case management during the COVID-19 pandemic.
CMSUK is holding its first-ever virtual awards event, which will bring together industry professionals from across the country to reflect on the impact of the pandemic on case management practice.
The ‘Acknowledgement of Achievement Awards; How the Pandemic Has Changed Case Management Practice’ event has four categories which will allow case managers and businesses the opportunity to review their work and achievements.
The event, on Friday, September 24, will build further on CMSUK’s commitment to case managers during the past year, during which it delivered a comprehensive offering in online education through an array of lunchtime webinars and study days, culminating in the industry’s first online conference.
Education and development is currently more vital than ever in case management, with the upcoming launch of the Institute of Registered Case Managers (IRCM) requiring case managers to evaluate heir learning and experiences to shape their professional development and practice.
“We didn’t have an awards event last year, and while we wanted to do something this year, the board felt we needed to do something a bit different,” Niccola Irwin, director of CMSUK, tells NR Times.
“This will be an opportunity to reflect on how COVID-19 has changed case management. In the submissions, we are asking for reflection on how the pandemic has changed their practice, which will also allow for sharing and showcasing good practice.
“Case managers have always been very creative and tenacious, and those strengths were never more needed than when the pandemic came and the circumstances were very different. But I think through reflecting on that time, looking at what we did and what we could do differently, will result in an even stronger offering to clients, customers and staff.
“The awards this year have been pared back a little bit, we have four categories, but we are so pleased to be able to reflect on the past year in this way, in what we hope will be a very nice event as well as a chance to celebrate.”
Categories open for nomination are:
- Clinical Case Manager of the Year – Catastrophic
- Clinical Case Manager of the Year – Moderate/Severe
- Case Manager Supporter of the Year
- Case Management Company of the Year
Shortlisted nominees will be invited to present their short reflection at the online networking and award event.
Visit CMSUK here to find out how to nominate, sponsor the awards and book a place at the event. Nominations close on Friday, June 25.
Case managers praised for vital work during pandemic
Case managers have won praise for the “vital role” they have played in their response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
New research has found that 81 per cent of claimant personal injury solicitors believe case managers have risen to the challenges presented by the pandemic.
Solicitors credited case managers for “adapting to an unprecedented situation”, “transitioning to remote working”, “developing bespoke solutions”, “ensuring rehabilitation continued seamlessly” and “facilitating remote rehabilitation”.
The research, by barristers Exchange Chambers and neurorehabilitation centre Calvert Reconnections – a first-of-its-kind brain injury rehabilitation centre in the UK, which opens next month – reflects on a period during which case management had to find alternative ways to provide its services to clients to ensure support continued.
“This research is well-deserved recognition for the vital role case managers have played during the Covid-19 pandemic. They’ve worked proactively and innovatively to ensure the most effective outcome for their clients,” says Bill Braithwaite QC, head of Exchange Chambers and a trustee at the Lake District Calvert Trust.
Calling for ever closer working relationships between lawyers and case managers, Bill added: “I’ve always thought that a good case manager was the key to a successful outcome for the injured person, the family, and the compensation claim.
“If you appoint a good case manager early, and that person has the ability to get to know the family, gain their trust and confidence, and help to manage the stormy voyage through recovery and rehabilitation, that person will be an invaluable contact point for the solicitor, frequently helping him or her to avoid disturbing and distressing the family.
“So much of the litigation is bound up with the injured person and the family, and the plan for life.
“Further developing the relationship between the two professions would inevitably improve standards all round.”
Heather Batey, neuro OT, managing director of reach and trustee at The Lake District Calvert Trust, spoke of the vital role case managers have played in supporting clients.
“Over the past 12 months, the health and wellbeing of many TBI patients has been in the hands of case managers who have been supporting their patients and sourcing services as required while being the ‘go to’ point for families,” she says.
“Throughout the pandemic, it has been a difficult role to navigate, but by using their clinical reasoning skills and thinking ‘outside the box’ in such extraordinary circumstances, they have successfully ensured that treatment has progressed, generally remotely.
“They’ve also supported their patients’ mental health, which has been paramount.
“Case managers have also been excellent in sourcing iPads, laptops and smart phones for their patients, which has enabled rehabilitation to progress successfully.
“I totally agree that a good case manager is key to ensuring a successful outcome for a TBI client and their family. I work with case managers and with almost every patient we have seen excellent practice, great communication and holistic problem-solving skills coming to the fore.”
Jackie Dean, clinical director at N-Able Services, also welcomed the findings.
“It is my experience that case managers have advocated for their clients, have ensured that services have continued, both remotely and in person where required, and with appropriate PPE,” she adds.
“Risk assessments have been conducted and, as is the strength of case management, problem solving has taken place around staffing, mental capacity and continuation of therapy in the community.”
‘This is a really exciting time for case management’
As chair of BABICM, Angela Kerr, prepares to step down after five years in post, she reflects on her achievements in the role – and how she is helping to shape the future through her new position at the helm of IRC
After five years at the helm of the UK’s professional body for brain injury and complex case management, Angela Kerr certainly has a lot to reflect on.
During her tenure as chair of BABICM, the organisation has seen significant structural change, including rearrangements and introduction of new sub-groups being established, to help bring together specific talent and interest and make the decision process more efficient.
BABICM has also proved to be an invaluable resource to members during the COVID-19 pandemic, offering support and guidance during a hugely turbulent time for case management and the neuro sector, during which significant revision to traditional practice was needed.
Membership has also grown from over 500 to more than 900 members, as BABICM continues to build its standing and reputation as a central resource for case managers nationally working in brain and complex injury work.
Now, as Angela prepares to step down from her role at the BABICM AGM in June, handing over the chair to Vicki Gilman, she has already committed to the next challenge – becoming chair of the newly-created Institute of Registered Case Managers (IRCM), hailed as the future of case management.
“We’ve done a lot in the past five years and I now think BABICM is an organisation set for the world ahead,” reflects Angela.
“I’m proud of what we’ve done, it’s been very much a team effort and I suppose you could say I’ve coordinated and directed the talent and skills within the group to make things happen – but good things don’t come without a lot of hard work.
“When I took over, I had a few objectives. I wanted to sort out the database and website, refine the structures and I wanted to link with other like-minded people and organisations to work together more collaboratively.
“In the past five years, that has been done. It is with great pleasure that I can say we have achieved everything I had on my list when I first took over.”
“As part of the restructuring, we appointed an operations manager to take things forward, and we’re working with bodies like UKABIF and the Court of Protection and many others who link in with what we’re doing.
“I’m delighted with the growth in membership, and we’ve really increased our delivery of training and events, we have a phenomenal programme which will help equip case managers for the future ahead.
“I also wanted to produce a book about the history of BABICM, in this our 25th year, to show how far we’ve come. I signed that off in January, so that has also become reality.
“So I’m in the nice position of feeling I’ve achieved all the things I wanted to achieve. I have really enjoyed my time as chair, it’s the right time to hand over to someone who can take BABICM to that next level.”
Having presided over BABICM during the COVID-19 pandemic and the huge change that necessitated from case management, Angela is proud of the organisation’s response.
“It was very important we gave people direction and guidance when they needed it, and we did that. I’m really proud of how we worked alongside the other membership bodies during that time, all of us as chairs realised the importance of doing that,” says Angela.
“It’s been an incredibly challenging time, and the priority has been keeping everyone concerned safe, clients and members alike, but we’ve always supported our members in doing what is right.
“Every situation is different, some case managers are registered with the CQC and were able to access resources those that weren’t couldn’t , so there was a lot to respond to and often some firefighting to be done.
“But throughout, we’ve been a resource for people, we’ve banded together and been one team.
“We continue to collate and share information with the membership to try and get it all in one place, such as the guidance around the vaccination programme and where to go.
“Testing is being done every week now and the vaccination programme is well underway, they’ve both been game changers really, so we’ve come a long way – but there will still be challenges for our members. We’ll take every day as it comes but BABICM is always here to support people.”
Through the structural change within BABICM, Angela – former owner of AKA Case Management – was able to use her characteristic love of creativity, good organisation and order to maximum effect.
“I love running projects and shaping things, refining them to make things happen – I loved doing puzzles as a child and I think solving things is something that has never left me,” she says.
“When I came into the role of BABICM chair, I did what I’d do in any situation, I evaluated what we had, looked at what was needed as a priority and identified a plan of how we could get there.
“For me, the growth of any organisation requires a lot of wheels to turn and it needs people to work together to achieve that.
“Through refinements of our sub groups and introduction of the operations person, this has played a big role, and takes a lot of specific actions away from the general meetings. The subgroup members are brilliant and work really hard all of them also members of BABICM and work within the industry.
“I think that this has enabled BABICM to take the big steps forward and shapes the organisation for the future. It’s also something we are doing with IRCM.”
The development of the IRCM over several years brings together BABICM, CMSUK and the VRA, and Angela’s integral role in its creation will continue with her appointment as chair of the newly-established body.
IRCM is currently working towards accreditation from the Professional Standards Authority (PSA), which, once secured, will help to shape the future of the whole profession and the way case managers operate.
“It’s a really exciting time and is certainly keeping me busy, as there is a lot of work to do,” says Angela.
“The initial joint guidance we created is being updated to meet PSA criteria, it’s very much a developing situation, as we’re working towards PSA accreditation, which is a very stringent process. But we see the IRCM as being the future, so it’s vital we do this for case management as a profession.
“We know there are people setting up as case managers and working with clients, who sometimes may not have the high level of professional competence and standards we would like to see, but at the minute there is little we can do about that.
“By creating the IRCM, accredited by the PSA, and registering case managers, we are bringing in a way of checking competence and ability to practice as a case manager which is what the industry wants to see.
“This will be hugely valuable for case management and for increased levels of confidence and trust in what we do, and I’m looking forward to leading the development of IRCM.
“Things will certainly not be any less busy or challenging than they have been, but I prefer it that way.”
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