04 March 2019
We recently received an email from the mother of one of our cerebral palsy patients, Zack, who has been working with clinicians David, Sam and physiotherapist Elaine Owen for several years. Here, mother Jacqui talks about her experience.
“Multidisciplinary teams in business will sit down together and discuss a project with all parties concerned, each adding their particular expertise and insight. This is what it is like at London Orthotic Consultancy (LOC) but on a more personal level: Teamworking is evident. The camaraderie and mutual respect is undeniable. The attention to the smallest achievement is uplifting."
Zack is 12 and was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at birth, later he presented with spastic quadriplegia. I was extremely lucky to find Elaine Owen at Bangor when Zack was 9 months old. It wasn’t until I moved to various other counties that I realised there are many different ways of managing Zack’s condition, sadly not with the same outcome. I was able to continue seeing Elaine for 10 years at her NHS clinic as I made a personal choice to move to live within her catchment area. When she started working at LOC I felt I can now live wherever I choose without being dictated to by NHS bureaucracy.
Zack receives the best possible treatment at LOC. The key people are always involved in the discussions needed to enable Zack to walk to the best of his ability. Nowhere have I seen orthotist and physiotherapists working alongside each other in the same room, at every appointment. There is the opportunity to discuss all aspects of Zack’s complex needs with people who know Zack almost as well as I do.
Sam will take time out from his busy schedule to pop in to say 'hi'. The reception staff talk to you on the phone with personal knowledge of who you are and who your child is. The teamworking is easy to see across all departments. Having the manufacturing unit in the same building is invaluable, meaning any adjustments needed are done there and then. “I’ll just pop these ankle foot orthoses (AFOs) upstairs and get that done” whilst Zack has a thorough assessment. Every appointment involves the Gait Lab – a crucial diagnostic tool. Zack loves walking up and down the ‘runway’ entertaining the staff.
Working with LOC and Elaine has been a great experience – they really take the time to look at your child and understand their individual challenges and needs. For parents who are in the same position that we were, I would say do your research – see what clinics are available near you and what the costs are, but my feeling is it’s worth every penny.
After 10 years of daily physiotherapy and swimming, not to mention SDR, hamstring and tendon lengthening, we have finally achieved independent walking – it was a mother’s day gift that would take some beating.
LOC’s video vector technology measures exactly where Austin’s weight is being distributed, how his hips are moving and how his legs are moving. It’s those insights that have made his new AFOs so effective. Even within a few days, LOC’s splints have had more impact on his independence of movement than anything else we have done.
Since his new orthoses, his change has been remarkable. He is more mobile and can walk independently. Jason is now walking indoors and outdoors and is unrestricted. He is now properly enjoying the summer sunshine for the first time in a few years with no complaints of pain.
It has been a breath of fresh air – LOC’s ability to accommodate Sophie’s circumstances and manufacture her orthotics so quickly has taken a huge amount of potential stress away. Alan talks to Sophie as well - she looks forward to seeing him. He has even been able to fulfil her request to have her SMOs decorated with unicorns! It makes her feel special and much happier about wearing them.
I can now go a mile without having to stop, so it is a lot better and I’m walking in a regular pattern now. The orthotic fits perfectly because LOC took proper mouldings and photographs; they were very thorough.
"There is such a friendly atmosphere at LOC, Zack gelled with David straight away. And there is an empathy I have not experienced in understaffed NHS clinics. It can be emotional for parents with children with disability and I have always felt supported by the staff. Whatever question I have there is an expert in that field available to answer. There is a holistic approach to the child, including considering their feelings over the look of adaptions and style of shoe. It is possible to discuss maintenance stretching, dynamic exercises, walking frames and sticks and standing frames. One-Stop does all, with the knowledge you are receiving the benefit of over 40 years of experience. I truly believe my son is far more mobile and has a good gait because of the treatment he receives from all members of staff working as a team with the same goal. The service is impeccable, professional and friendly.”
We would very much like to thank Jacqui again for this testimonial and for allowing us to share it with other patients and parents.
We have the following facilities and amenities at our Kingston Upon Thames location:
We also have the Gait Laboratory for orthotics patients and Onsite Manufacturing for speedy turnarounds and adjustments whilst you wait.
We have the following facilities and amenities at our Cambridge location:
For more information about The Beechwood Complementary Medical Practice, please visit The Beechwood Practice.
We have the following facilities and amenities at our Bristol location:
For more information, visit Litfield House Medical Centre.
LOC’s clinic is based in the University of Salford’s Podiatry Department and provides treatments for orthotics, scoliosis, pectus deformities, positional plagiocephaly and club foot.
It is also the base for LOC’s northern OSKAR clinic which is run by Sam Walmsley, clinical director of LOC, in conjunction with Elaine Owen MBE MSc SRP MCSP.
Due to COVID-19, we have had to temporarily close the Salford clinic and are operating out of another clinic in Bolton.
508 Blackburn Rd,
For more information, please visit The Good Health Centre