Totus Neurorehabilitation was founded by Clinical Neuropsychologists Dr. Claire Bazen-Peters and Dr. Emma Hale on a dog walk in 2019. They reflected on how in the ever-evolving field of healthcare, one resounding truth remains constant: collaboration yields the most promising outcomes.
Nowhere is this truer than in the realm of neurorehabilitation, where clients and their families face such daunting challenges.
Claire and Emma envisioned a rehabilitation service that would break down the silos, unite expert practitioners from various disciplines, and prioritise the well-being of not only patients and their support networks, but also the dedicated professionals who support them.
The Totus team have embarked on a mission fuelled by compassion and a keen understanding of the existing approaches and evidence base in neurorehabilitation.
Since their founding, they have grown to a team of nearly 40 practitioners and span across the South West, and South Coast of England and Wales.
The Totus Approach: Interdisciplinary Synergy
At the heart of Totus Neurorehabilitation is the belief that rehabilitation is a collective effort and, therefore, that truly individualised rehabilitation requires a carefully curated team of practitioners that combine different specialisms in Neuropsychology, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Speech and Language Therapy and Dietetics.
This joined-up service, although utilised within the NHS for decades, is somewhat inconsistent in the private sector.
The Totus model of interdisciplinary working is effective, clear and efficient, it fosters wellbeing of the client and their support network, and research shows this approach delivers better rehabilitation outcomes.
Claire and Emma passionately believe that client involvement is paramount and that the greatest resource for rehabilitation is the client themselves.
A key focus in their approach is the importance placed on clear, client led, goal setting, spanning across disciplines.
This enables clear markers of progress for the client, but also for funders to access and evaluate. The merits of true interdisciplinary rehabilitation are manifold and underscore the mission of Totus Neurorehabilitation:
1. Holistic care:
Brain injuries often have multifaceted consequences, affecting cognitive, physical, social, and emotional domains. The Totus team can holistically address these challenges collaboratively.
2. Improved outcomes:
Interdisciplinary collaboration means that experts continuously share insights and optimise their input. Research evidence suggests this promotes better outcomes for the client.
3. Customised rehabilitation plans:
Each client and their family are unique, and their rehabilitation journey should reflect that. Interdisciplinary teams can tailor treatment plans to the individual, offering a more effective and personalised approach.
Having a fully integrated team within one service limits the potential for duplication providing a cost saving benefit.
A crucial objective is for the rehabilitation supplied by Totus to be sustainable. That is, that treatment plans cater for long term need and not just short term outcomes.
Claire and Emma emphasise the need for constant professional development and learning. Regular CPD for the team is provided and networks of peer supervision groups have been established to ensure up to date research and approaches inform the rehabilitation provided.
Totus Neurorehabilitation’s approach is a statement to the potential that emerges when professionals from various fields unite with a common purpose.
Their approach, founded on compassion and rooted in evidence based practice, serves as a beacon of hope for individuals and families navigating the challenging terrain of brain injury rehabilitation.
Through recognising the value of interdisciplinary rehabilitation, legal professionals specialising in personal injury cases and case managers entrusted with patient affairs can ensure their clients receive neurorehabilitation that is multifaceted, coordinated and tailored to need.
A Client’s View – Simon E
The initial main challenge was accepting I had had a brain injury. The physical challenges were hard to ignore, but I’d had no previous experience of a brain injury.
All I knew were the words people were telling me. It inherently terrified me. After leaving hospital I thought “they’ve got this wrong”, I was in complete denial.
There was a delay in starting my rehabilitation, and I was hugely sceptical.
I understood what a Physiotherapist could do for me, I understood what an Occupational Therapist could do for me, but I thought “what on earth can a psychologist do for me?!”
But six months on and the psychology sessions have had the most significant impact.
I began to realise that not all my symptoms could be attributed to the physical injuries, accepting the brain injury helped me to start to make sense of it all.
I remember the impact of those initial conversations, there was a lessening of fear.
I gradually began to see that my life is different, but that doesn’t have to mean it is worse than it was. The sessions have helped me to understand myself and the impact of my injury, and what I can do to help myself.
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