The first diploma in physiotherapy support has been awarded to Sheryl Barnett, who works for Aneurin Bevan University Health Board.
Sheryl Barnett: ‘I would like encourage as many other support workers as possible to do this too.’
Launched in October 2015, the diploma is designed to standardise training and skills development, and improve the quality of care for patients. It also provides a formal qualification for CSP associate members.
Ms Barnett completed 12-months of study for the diploma in August. She will receive a certificate from Welsh charity and social enterprise Agored Cymru at a formal ceremony later this year.
Over a course of mostly home study, she was mentored by Mandy Tyler, a clinical specialist physiotherapist at Ystrad Mynach Hospital, Caerphilly.
Ms Barnett described her achievement as: ‘Fantastic. Amazing. I have never been first for something and I would like encourage as many other support workers as possible to do this too.’
She is a full-time physiotherapy support worker for the health board, dividing her time between reablement in the Caerphilly community and cardiac rehabilitation at the town’s Ystrad Mynach Hospital.
She has been a physiotherapy support worker for 11 years, since leaving the RAF.
A Welsh government event in November 2015 to mark the official launch of the diploma inspired Ms Barnett to take the course.
It was attended by more than 25 CSP associate members from across Wales and health secretary Vaughan Gething. He told guests that support workers made up over 41 per cent of NHS Wales workforce and that the Welsh government was committed to ensuring their professional development.
Philippa Ford, the CSP’s policy and public affairs manager for Wales, said: ‘I would like to see this first diploma in physiotherapy support encouraging other associate members, who I know are out there working towards their diplomas.’
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