Physiotherapy student is in the social media limelight

A week is a long time in politics but it flew by for student Jaydee Burchell who stepped up to fill the role of guest commentator for the NHS social media.

Jaydee Burchell is the first physiotherapy student to take charge of @NHS

Ms Burchell curated @NHS Twitter in the third week of January and was the first physiotherapy student to do so.

The Twitter page is run by a different individual every week and offers a glimpse into the life of NHS staff and patients.

The second-year student at Keele University told Frontline: ‘I talked about my experience as a physiotherapy student, as well as giving an insight into the profession as a whole.

‘I first heard about the @NHS Twitter through Vienna-Jaye Burchell, an orthoptist and my sister, as she has previously curated the page.

How it came about

‘I received a phone call saying they didn’t have anyone to do the next week and asking if I was keen to do it from a student’s perspective. After confirming that I was willing to curate the page, I was required to send two headshots, write a plan of the week, and have my first conference call to talk about the agreement, as well as any questions or queries I had.

‘Following this, I signed the agreement, and set up my tweets. I used tweet-deck to pre-plan my tweets as I was on placement and didn’t want to use my phone during the day.

‘At lunchtime and in the evenings, I used my laptop to post more detailed threads, and reply to any comments I was sent during the day.

The week's themes

Throughout the week her themes were students. ' I talked about the process of getting into Keele University, what I looked for, and tips that would be helpful to current and future students.

‘I also spoke about opportunities; extra courses I have completed, volunteering opportunities, international years and extra placements. Campaigns run by the CSP were a popular topic, and Love activity, Hate exercise?, Never Too Late, and Rehab Matters were included.

‘I explored the physiotherapy specialities to try and highlight the vast area covered by physiotherapists. I finished on research by my lecturers that I have found interesting,' Ms Burchell said.

The experience

‘I absolutely loved the experience, and it was a pleasure to be able to use a slightly different slant as a physiotherapy student.’

She said she had been able to access many opportunities throughout her time at Keele and thanked the support of staff in the school of health and rehabilitation. 'I really look forward to the time I have left.'

Jaydee's future

Mapping out her near future, Ms Burchell said: 'I am looking forward to studying the module of specialist populations, which I will hopefully explore my personal areas of interest in great detail. I hope to go on an international year to Vrije University in the Netherlands to complete a psychology minor, and to La Trobe University in Australia to complete prosthetic and orthotic, and biomechanics modules.

‘After graduation I hope to find a rotation offering lots of room for development. I currently have specific interests in paediatrics and amputee rehabilitation, and I am currently looking into opportunities for work experience over summer to increase my knowledge in these areas. I will keep my options open for the future, and I hope to continue to use all opportunities to my advantage.’

Promoting the profession

CSP student officer Ciara Younge said: 'Jaydee took great initiative to put herself on such a national platform in order to promote the profession.

'It was wonderful to see the myth-buster polls she did in order to tackle of some of the stereotypes that the public have towards the profession, as well as promoting the entryways and varied career options within the profession.

'Similarly to Amanda Hensman-Cook’s time on the account, Jaydee has shown that she is a great advocate and influencer for the profession.

Showcase and build

'It is important to see members get access to such a platform in order to showcase and build upon all the work that our members are continuously doing across the UK. Hopefully we will not need to wait long to see another member discussing the importance and variety that is physiotherapy to the 38,000 strong followers on the @NHS account.'

To get involved in @NHS, you would be required to send a short biography and a link to your Twitter account to

Ms Burchell can be followed on Twitter @BurchellJaydee


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