Devising and implementing an education strategy for therapists working within the major trauma network


Major trauma is a unique area for Allied Health Professionals (AHP). It requires specialist skills over a broad spectrum of patient impairments. To date there is no clear educational programme in place for AHP’s working across the trauma networks. The aim of this project was to review the AHP training needs within the hub-spoke model of Major Trauma Networks and develop a training course to address these learning requirements.


A focus group comprising members of the Pan London rehab group discussed the educational needs of those working within major trauma and how these could best be addressed. This was supplemented by an anonymous online survey which received 80 responses from a broad range of professionals working across the patient pathway. The information obtained from these two sources was used to establish the learning aims and expectations required for a training course and the educational team at St. George’s University of London were approached to work collaboratively in developing a short course with M level credits. Taking account of funding pressures within the NHS and the time restraints of the workforce, it was agreed that the course content would be best delivered as three study days and a work-based learning (WBL) module, that would demonstrate students learning in their own workplace.


Results: A 3-day course entitled ‘rehabilitation in major trauma’ was delivered to 27 students. The aim of the short course was to equip participants with the knowledge and skills to manage patients who have sustained traumatic injury within the trauma system. The course combined a mix of learning platforms and ranged from acute management to lifelong expectations and prognosis for this patient group. Work completed by students in relation to their WBL directly impacted on the quality of care for patients, with one project developing a new protocol for managing collars across the North West London network. Anonymous feedback from 14 participants was obtained on conclusion of the course. These results showed that students were engaged and felt that course content was valuable and relatable to their job. Their responses also indicated that more discussion and case studies would help to instill learning and ensure relevance to their practice.

Conclusion(s): The Pan London rehabilitation group successfully ran an M level short course targeting those working in rehabilitation within the major trauma system. A future course is planned with more emphasis on problem-based scenarios to ensure consolidation of learning. Ongoing succession planning and review of the educational strategy is required in line with emerging guidelines that supports those working in major trauma and the wider network. Two separate educational streams may be required, one for those working in major trauma and one for those working within the network.

Cost and savings



These study days have an important role in training our workforce in the new and developing world of major trauma in order to ensure therapists are suitably skilled for this complex patient group. They have also facilitated skill sharing across networks and implementation of new initiatives and service developments through the WBL projects.

Top three learning points

No further information. 

Funding acknowledgements

Northwest London trauma network.