Lakshmi sustained a complete spinal cord Injury in a road traffic accident at C1 level when she was 4 years old. This meant that Lakshmi experienced the highest level of paralysis but was also dependent on a ventilator to breathe. Allison Saltrese was appointed to work with Lakshmi and her family within months of her injury.
Christopher was a passenger in a vehicle involved in a road traffic accident. He sustained a brain injury which rendered him paralysed with cognitive impairments and personality changes. Following his rehabilitation within the NHS, Christopher was placed in residential care and was not provided with the appropriate assistance.
All personal details have been changed to ensure anonymity.
All personal details have been changed to ensure anonymity.
Lakshmi sustained a complete spinal cord Injury in a road traffic accident at C1 level when she was 4 years old. This meant that Lakshmi experienced the highest level of paralysis but was also dependent on a ventilator to breathe. Allison Saltrese was appointed to work with Lakshmi and her family within months of her injury. The impact of an injury of this severity is magnified when the client is a child. Therefore a balance of sensitivity and solid practical support is needed. For families who have specific cultural needs, additional care is essential to ensure these are met sensitively and appropriately.
The first task was to ensure that Lakshmi could return home with the support of a fully trained care team. Within weeks of her appointment, Allison arranged for Lakshmi to begin to spend increasing amounts of time at home. Lateral thinking helped to solve the immediate accommodation challenges until such time as a suitable property was found and adapted. Part of Allison’s role was to help Lakshmi’s parents liaise with the extensive number of professionals needed to maximise rehabilitation. With careful planning Lakshmi successfully travelled overseas to visit her family. Lakshmi enjoys attending school and spending time with her friends.
Christopher was a passenger in a vehicle involved in a road traffic accident. He sustained a brain injury which rendered him paralysed with cognitive impairments and personality changes. Following his rehabilitation within the NHS, Christopher was placed in residential care. but was not provided with the appropriate assistance. Allison Saltrese was appointed by Christopher's solicitor with the remit to 'do what you can'.
The first step was to assess Christopher to determine his level of need. This generated a case management plan which identified short, medium and long-term goals. Within the first stage, Allison Saltrese designed a programme of activities. A support worker was appointed to assist Christopher in the development of his independent living skills and cognitive strategies. In addition, a wheelchair-accessible vehicle was hired to provide immediate transport. An appropriate wheelchair and pressure relieving seating was investigated and purchased. A comprehensive property search was undertaken and an offer was made on a suitable bungalow.
During the first six months, Christopher gained an improved quality of life and began engaging in a wide variety of activities that supported development of his independent living skills. The property was adapted and care staff were recruited and trained to initiate a full 24-hour care package in a way that supports strategies to integrate Christopher into the community. Christopher is now living in the community and enjoying life within the limitations of his disability.
Helen was injured at work when she fell down a flight of stairs and sustained a spinal cord injury at C5/6. Prior to the accident she worked as a pharmaceutical representative. Robert Taylor was jointly instructed by Helen's solicitor and the insurer to prepare a future needs report. During this assessment Helen was able to discuss her worries and concerns in a full and frank manner.
Drawing on his experience of living with a spinal cord injury, Robert provided Helen with a valuable role model and, together with the team of rehabilitation professionals, encouraged her to draw on her own pre-accident abilities to set new goals which would enhance her personal fulfilment and quality of life. Following successful conclusion of her claim Helen contacted Robert to let him know she had returned to work and was offered a promotion.
Jim is a carefree 9-year-old who enjoyed attending school with his friends. He was collected from school by his mum in her car and they were involved in a road traffic accident. Jim acquired a spinal cord injury and was admitted to a spinal injuries unit. We were contacted early by both his solicitor and the insurer on a joint basis to help Jim and his family. Allison Saltrese went to see Jim and his mother at the spinal injuries unit. She then visited the family home to see if it could be altered to accommodate him as a wheelchair user and to provide support and assistance to his family. A report was prepared outlining Jim's immediate needs for:
- Appropriate aids and equipment
- Educational support
- Accessible transport
- Additional costs the family would face
- Appropriate accommodation
Jim's solicitor commissioned an independent report from an expert witness to establish quantum. Over the next two years Allison Saltrese provided an independent case management service for Jim and his family ensuring that all the support and equipment needed was provided, all the immediate recommendations were instigated and all the agencies involved in Jim's rehabilitation worked closely together. Her role was to:
- Support and assist Jim's family at this traumatic time
- Enable provision of aids and equipment
- Liaise with accommodation experts to identify the optimum solution
- Purchase and arrange delivery of appropriate equipment and vehicle
- Liaise closely with the relevant agencies and clinicians
- Provide psychological support to Jim's parents
- Inform Jim's parents of their options
- Support Jim and his family in making informed choices
Over the next few months Jim was able to return home and start school again. Jim now lives in a fully accessible home with his parents, brother and sisters, he is taking two GCSE exams, one year ahead of his peer group.