Solihull physios share collaborative working award

A team of physiotherapists, leisure centre staff and volunteers won an award for their collaborative work in a pulmonary rehab programme.

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Staff from Heart of England NHS Trust physiotherapy team, Solihull Active, Parkwood Community Leisure Team and patient volunteers

Members of the Heart of England NHS Trust’s physiotherapy team were part of a group that took centre stage at the Solihull Together for Better Lives Awards, held in the West Midlands town last month.

The award marked the team’s successful scheme that provides rehab and physical activity pathways, linking healthcare, leisure and voluntary sectors.

Under the scheme, physios work with Solihull Council leisure services and local provider, Parkwood Leisure. Together they have prepared exercise staff to gain accreditation as British Lung Foundation ‘active instructors’.

Volunteers back the project, with patients who completed the programme ‘buddying’ new recruits.

Helen Beadle, a highly specialist respiratory physiotherapist, said: ‘This win is a huge achievement for the team and the volunteers as there were 13 entries in this category alone.’

After its initial success, the initiative has been extended to support leisure services in holding classes for patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and Parkinson's.

Neuro physios share the spotlight

Ms Beadle’s colleague Marie Adams, a senior neuro physiotherapist at Solihull Hospital, is part of the team that received the award. She had arranged for a local gym to help people self-manage neurological conditions.

‘The changes have had a positive effect on the service provision as a whole, as we are able to be more responsive and have set up clinics to support those who require occasional assistance,’ Ms Adams said.

‘It allows us to capture patients at very early stages of their disease process through a self-management programme that includes exercises and education.

‘And working collaboratively with our partners in health means that services are used more appropriately, and we have gone some way in making our MS and Parkinson's communities more resilient.’

She added that this type of ‘transformational change’ of services helped to combat the pressures on the NHS and to maintain sustainable services.

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by Robert Millett

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