Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) are making a real difference to the lives of patients of all ages across the borough and their roles will come under the spotlight on Monday 14 October when Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust celebrates national Allied Health Professionals Day.
As well as raising awareness of the many AHP roles that are helping to transform health, care and wellbeing, the focus will also be on Healthcare Sciences and detailing the career development opportunities that are available and advising those who want to consider pursuing a career in a profession allied to health.
Staff from the trust’s hospital and community services will be hosting an information stand in the Costa Coffee area of Walsall Manor Hospital on Monday 14 October between 11am and 2pm.
Among Walsall Healthcare’s AHPs is Kimberley Bateman, Speech and Language Therapist.
She explained: “To become a Speech and Language Therapist, I studied a Health Foundation Course at Keele University. This gave me the skills I needed to be accepted on to the Speech and Language Therapy Course at Birmingham City University, where I studied for three years as a mature student.
“I completed my Speech and Language training in 2018 and worked for a private organisation after graduating, before moving into the NHS role in January 2019. I applied for the role within Walsall Healthcare, as I really believe in the trust’s values and it was evident to me that the team really did embody these.
“A Speech and Language therapist can assess and support children and/or adults with a range of speech, language, communication and swallowing difficulties.
“My current role involves working in a range of paediatric settings. These include: clinics, schools, homes and the Child Development Centre in Shelfield. I work with a range of children with varied needs such as Developmental Language Disorder, dysfluency, speech sound disorders and social communication difficulties.
“I have been fortunate to develop my skills in a range of clinical areas and have recently completed my newly qualified competency framework. We have a supportive team, with a wide variety of skills and knowledge to draw upon.
“I work with children on a 1:1 or group basis for a variety of Speech and Language needs. My role also involves advising/training significant people around the child, so that they can support their child’s needs on a more frequent basis. My working week can be varied. For example; at the start of the week I may be helping to support children with complex needs at home or in nursery, to working in a clinic at the end of the week where I assess and diagnose children with a range of needs.
“I feel like I have joined Walsall Healthcare at a really exciting time and I am looking forward to seeing how my career progresses within the trust.”