It is often the case that the injured person, following an accident, requires some assistance, treatment and rehabilitation in order to aid their recovery.
Should this be the case then ASD, in accordance with the Rehabilitation Code as set out within the Civil Procedure Rules, will jointly instruct with the Insurers an appropriate rehabilitation provider. In the alternative ASD will simply instruct the Rehabilitation provider directly.
Depending on the severity of the injuries rehabilitation can take the form of either direct and early treatment, say, physiotherapy, or can include an “immediate needs assessment” followed by appropriate case management and ultimately occupational therapy, as provided by a qualified rehabilitation provider.
ASD have a number of such providers who offer the following services:-
The majority of rehabilitation providers will carry out an initial triage, which is typically undertaken by telephone by one of their carefully selected and appropriately qualified healthcare professionals. They will discuss the injury sustained, the injured persons current situation and answer any question. Subject to this triage and the severity of the injury appropriate treatment will be organised, whether that be by physiotherapists, osteopaths, chiropractors, psychotherapists or case managers. The rehabilitation providers have access to a number of centres in this region to ensure that the appropriate treatment provider can be located close to the injured person’s home.
Once an appropriate treatment provider has been identified we at ASD will ensure that funding is put in place to enable the treatment to be provided as soon as practical. The treatment provider will carry out an initial assessment and discuss with the injured person the ideal number and frequency of treatment sessions. Such treatment is usually successful in alleviating the acute pain suffered during the first few weeks/months post-accident.
If the injuries are complex, numerous and/or severe then, post triage, the rehabilitation provider will typically instruct one of their health practitioners, which is usually a qualified registered nurse, to attend the injured person at their home in order to carry out a full “immediate needs assessment”.
For rehabilitation to be effective the earlier the intervention and support the better. During an immediate needs assessment the treatment provider will assess the injured person’s disabilities, both physical and psychological and prepare a report setting out such injuries and what treatment and aids are appropriate.
The immediate needs assessment report will typically outline the injured persons post injury levels of function, to include strengths and weaknesses, how best treatment can be provided and any aids or adaptations which may be required to assist the injured person around their home. The report will typically give a breakdown of costs associated with the aids and adaptations required around the home, together with the cost of the treatment.
Once in receipt of the Immediate Needs Assessment Report ASD will seek to agree funding from the Defendant Insurer so that such aids, adaptations and treatment can be put in place.
It may be a suggestion within the immediate needs assessment report that on-going case management should be provided by the rehabilitation provider, such case management is usually appropriate for complex injuries and catastrophic cases which require specialist knowledge and expertise.
Case Management typically entails the Case Manager establishing care and support services for the injured person, whether that be for a few hours a day or for full 24 hour care. In addition the case manager will seek to liaise with the injured person’s NHS treating medics and GP or will source and seek funding for appropriate treatment to be carried out on a private basis, or a combination of the two. The injuries sustained may require a multidisciplinary approach to rehabilitation, which may involve a number of different treatment providers which the case manager can co-ordinate.
In addition case managers will often assist and liaise with other treatment providers, to include Occupational Therapists. An occupational therapist would assist the injured person in either returning to work, by informing and updating the injured person’s employer or, if alternative employment is required due to the extent and severity of the injuries then the occupational therapist and case manager will assist in sourcing alternate employment or identifying other jobs that the injured person would be able to undertake.
Ultimately the aim of rehabilitation, whether it is provided in the form of a course of physiotherapy or much more detailed and comprehensive support by a case manager, is to assist the injured person in recovering from their injuries as quickly as possible and returning to their pre accident condition and life, or, where that is not possible due to the injuries sustained, ensuring that recovery to the best possible level is achieved, to enable the injured person to regain the best possible quality of life.