Please briefly describe your clinical/medical experience to date?
I qualified as a physiotherapist from Keele University in 2016, where I initially gained experience in different specialities on junior rotations at my local district general hospital. Quite quickly however, I decided to specialise in paediatrics. Since 2017 I have treated children with a range of different conditions and disabilities in both community settings and acute hospitals. I worked as a paediatric physiotherapist at Northwick Park in Northwest London for a year before moving along to Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children (GOSH). It was whilst working at GOSH where I first found myself drawn to the specialty of childhood cancer care. Following a short four-month career break to work as a volunteer paediatric physiotherapist on the Island of St Lucia, I decided to accept a job at Kings College Hospital in London, where I have been working as the Team Lead Paediatric Oncology Physiotherapist since May 2022.
What motivated you to enter paediatric medical care in the first place?
I quickly found working in paediatric care was an area that suited my personality. As a paediatric physiotherapist, it requires more creativity and holistic thinking to engage your patients and build up a rapport. I find coming up with fun and exciting ways to help children get stronger very rewarding and I am always in awe of the resilience of children and their families.
How will the funding from The Evie Dove Foundation help you to advance your career and your impact/services to children?
With support from the Evie Dove Foundation, I am hoping to start completing masters’ modules in cancer care. Learning in depth about the management of cancer will advance my knowledge, that I can directly put into improving the intervention I provide for my patients. I am hoping with this opportunity, I will learn how to better manage and advocate for my patients in a time of NHS pressures and change. With on-going educational support, I aim to provide high level and valued care for children undergoing cancer treatments for years to come
How did you find out about The Evie Dove Foundation?
I heard about the Evie Dove Foundation through colleagues at Kings College Hospital in London, some of whom had the privilege of meeting Evie during her treatment.
Tell us about yourself!
I live in Tooting in Southwest London. I love living in this corner of the city, mostly due to the amazing Tooting Market, which has any and every option of food cuisine you can imagine! It’s my favourite place to go as a treat after a busy week at work. In my spare time in all honesty, I am a bit of a grandma! I love spending time trying to make my little garden bloom. In addition to this, I’m very into knitting! Most evenings I can be found working away on one of my many knitting projects. I’ve made a range of different things over the last few years such as jumpers, socks and scarves. This year however, I am particularly invested in making cabled beanies of every colour of the rainbow! When I am not at home, I love spending time with my friends and family, particularly visiting my family up in Scotland, where they live next to the coast. Visiting is always a lovely break from the busyness of London.
Anything else you would like to tell us about your experience, future aspirations and motivations?
I feel physiotherapists should be involved in best practice recommendations for children undergoing cancer treatments. This is something I hope to contribute to and advocate for, for years to come. My amazing patients and their families continually give me motivation in my role. It is a privilege to work with so many incredibly strong young people and I feel a sense of duty in my role to help as much as I can.