JLinks Physiotherapy, like many other independent community physiotherapy companies, is currently working to the guidance published by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. This means we have chosen to stop face to face visits with many of our clients until we are able to ensure client and clinician safety.
We are still able to consider face to face visits where Telehealth is not an option. The current recommendations that relate to JLinks Clients are that we can offer face to face services for clients where they
- Have a high suspicion of risk of serious deterioration from underlying pathology and we are unable to determine this remotely.
- Have urgent rehabilitation needs, which if not met, will require care from General Practice, secondary care or social care agencies.
- Require rehabilitation to support rapid discharge from hospital
To help clients who do not fall into these categories we have been providing Telehealth services wherever possible and this has worked well for some clients.
Telehealth services include video assessment and follow -up sessions and group exercise sessions. We have learnt the ‘tech’ required alongside our clients and the physiotherapy community has shared experiences and techniques so we have all learnt the skills we need quickly.
Telehealth exercise group for clients with Stroke.
This type of Physiotherapy is effective and is very useful in the following situations:
- To maintain social distancing and where patients are worried about attending appointments or having outside visitors to their house.
- For patients with symptoms of or confirmed Covid19 infection
- For patients who are at high risk of Covid19 infection and are shielding.
How can we help post- Covid19 patients
Evidence from hospitals around the world is showing that at least a quarter of people who were admitted to hospital ended up needing some breathing support on a ventilator. The effects on lungs and muscles can be significant and it can take people time to rebuild strength and stamina, as well as confidence to start exercising. Once people are back at home, they may find they need help with :
- Building strength and improving balance
- Improving mobility and confidence
- Understanding activity pacing
- Improving respiratory function
This can be done if the person following a risk assessment to identify appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).
Rehabilitation: Moving forward…
Both NHS and independent rehabilitation services are vital to help clients maintain independence, keep people out of hospital and reduce pressures and costs on all parts of the health and care system.
Jlinks Physiotherapy, like many other physiotherapists, is concerned about those people who have rehabilitation needs that are not counted as ‘essential’ on the current guidance (so we can’t currently help them) but feel very ‘essential’ to them. The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy has issued a policy statement that makes the case for maintaining community rehabilitation services during the pandemic to minimise negative impact on non-Covid19 patients as well as to help Covid19 patients continue to recover after discharge. People need rehabilitation for a range of other non-Covid19 health issues; stroke, brain injury, post-surgery, after a fall and many others.
As an independent community physiotherapy company, Jlinks Physiotherapy remains committed to providing a high quality physiotherapy service to community clients who choose to pursue the private physiotherapy route. We hope to be able to restart our ‘paused’ clients and help new ones, using a risk management approach and appropriate PPE very soon.
Jayne Steadman Clinical Director 07903 866590.