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Were you intrigued by the title? Here are the 6 very important ‘F’ words:
These ‘F’ word were first described by Dr. Peter Rosenbaum and Dr. Jan Willem Gorter in an article called The ‘F-words’ in childhood disability: I swear this is how we should think! In a straight forward non jargony way the ‘F’ words build upon the World Health Organizations (WHO’s) International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) framework.
In my practice as a children’s physiotherapist I have found using the ICF framework invaluable in planning and delivering care that really addresses outcomes that are important to children and families. The ‘f’ words have helped me engage with and bring clarity for parents and other non-health professionals.
You can read about about a parent’s perspective on the ‘F’ words here: Has your doctor heard about these ‘F’ words?
I am giving a presentation on the ‘F’ words and the ICF on Thurs 4th of May in Preston. You can book your free ticket here: F words: eventbrite ticket
If you are unable to get to the seminar I will be be producing a video of the session. Please sign up to my e-mail list and I will send you a link to watch the video. You’ll also get ‘5 great websites’ PDF as a bonus!
Watching Matthew Rees help David Wyeth finish yesterday’s London marathon caused me to shed a tear or two. It was so inspirational to see a dedicated runner give up his opportunity for a personal best (PB) for the good of another and the event. When the two men were interviewed later David said ‘we’re in it together’. It struck me as little strange initially, running seems to be such an individual pursuit. However marathon runners obviously consider themselves a community with a ‘greater good’ beyond the individual.
I immediately thought ‘I can see this in services for disabled children’. The team around the child (TAC) is made up of different individual professionals across various sectors. They train and work in different ways. The race isn’t merely about an individuals PB but the greater good. The greater good is positive outcomes for the child and family. I wonder sometimes when we work with children and families if we become blinkered aiming just for own own professions best.
I remember back to when I was a member of a head injury rehabilitation team. We were working with a little girl who had brain damage as result of too little oxygen during complicated heart surgery. This once able little girl was unresponsive in bed unable to move and stiff. As the lead physiotherapist I determined we would give this girl the very best physiotherapy. My team and I worked hard with her on a daily basis, pushing boundaries and not giving up hope of getting her walking again. Three months later she was walking and even running. As a physiotherapist I had achieved a PPB personal professional best….. BUT what about the little girl and her family? Sadly the girls cognitive and communication skills had improved very little. The family were disappointed and having to come terms with their child looking and moving as a 6 year old but understanding and communicating as a toddler. With hindsight my treatment was good and appropriate however I wish I had had more professional selflessness and had worked more to support my speech and language and psychology colleagues.
The TAC could often be better described as a group around the child GAC. Organisational agendas and individual professional approaches can drive our interventions and interactions. We along side one another rather than together. To achieve great outcomes for children we need to truly function as a team. No one professional or organisation can afford to see themselves as the ‘star’ player. I would say we should give the child and family the coach role. The players have the skills but coach knows where the goal is.
‘Scoring a goal is a team thing’
I’m excited to share with you an app I have discovered recently. It’s saving me time and improving my efficiency at home and work. Office Lens from Microsoft trims, enhances and makes pictures of whiteboards and docs readable. Office Lens will even convert images to PDF, Word and PowerPoint files. The app is free to download and simple to use. It integrates with your smart phone’s digital camera. Here are examples of the two main uses I’ve made of Office Lens.
1) Saving and sharing letters received by post:
It’s great to be able to save reports and membership information digitally. Office lens has allowed me to decrease the space I need for paper storage. It has enabled me to easily share medical reports I’ve received for my son with his school.
A standard photo I took of a letter:
An ‘Office Lens’ photo taken with the same phone in the same lighting:
A screen shot showing the photo effectively converted to an editable word document:
A screen shot showing conversion to PDF:
2) Capturing information at lectures and events:
Here is a standard photo of my view of a whiteboard during a presentation:
Here is the ‘Office Lens’ image taken from the same place with the same phone:
I could have got an even better image but I was not using the whiteboard setting! I’ll try this again at my next presentation / event opportunity.
I hope you are inspired to give office lens a go. Please give me some feedback in the comments below or head over to my synergy-now facebook page.
What’s the difference between an academic journal, a scholarly journal, a peer reviewed journal and a magazine? Well they are all publications. The three with journal in the title are different names for the same thing! It is as though academia likes to complicate things. I have produced a straight forward infographic to simply show the differences between journals and magazines.
3 explanations for journal terms that you may find helpful
- Peer Review When an editor of a journal recieves a proposed publication from an author they send it (anonymously) to other experts (peers) in the field to give their opinions on whether the paper should be published. Depending on the reviewers responses the editor may accept, reject or send the paper back to the author for amendments or improvements. Peer review helps ensure the quality of articles published in journals.
- Reference Lists One of the things peer reviewers check for in a submission for publication is an appropriate, extensive and up to date reference list. The reference list demonstrates the author knows the field. The reference list also allows the reader to follow up, gain deeper understanding and engage in the research ‘conversation’.
- Impact factor Journals are quoted as having an impact factor. This is a system of ranking the quality of journals. In basic terms the impact factor is a number that shows how many times on average each article in the journal gets referenced (mentioned) in other peer reviewed journals over the previous 2 years. The higher the number the better. You can do a google search of a journals name with ‘impact factor’ to find it’s score. My view is that in the field of childhood disability an impact factor over 1 is good.
I hope you have found this useful. Please feel free to ask any questions or post any comments over on my facebook page https://www.facebook.com/synergynow/
‘Put it in your pocket, save it for a quieter day’: Pocket a free app for saving fab stuff from the web
Do you ever get frustrated that you now can’t find that great article you saw only yesterday? Typically in our busy lives you come across something really interesting just before you have to leave for a meeting. Whilst sat in a waiting room scrolling through twitter you spot a possible answer just as your name is called. Pocket could be your solution.
I have been using the pocket app on my phone and the pocket extension in my internet browser for just over a month. I highly recomend it. Here is a quick run through of how to use it.
First you will need to download the app to your phone and install the extension in your browser. Pocket works with ios and android and with most browsers.
Here is a screenshot of my ‘pocket’ from my laptop and phone.
To add a web page to pocket from your phone:
- Whilst viewing the page you want to save click on the 3 dots in the top right corner
- A drop down box will appear
- Click on ‘Share via….’
- Share icons will appear
- Click on ‘Add to Pocket’
To add a web page from your internet browser simply click the pocket icon adjacent to your search bar.
Your web page will be saved to your pocket My list. You can click on it and open it in a simplified format without adds at any time. A screenshot of this ‘article view’ is below
You can easily print this article view from your browser. A feature I particulary like is pocket’s ability to read the article to me. I pop in my ear buds and listen to saved documents whilst on my dog walk
- Click the 3 dots in the top right
- Choose ‘Listen (TTS)
I hope you give pocket a go and find it helpful. As ever I’d love to hear how you get on with it. Let me know at Synergy Now facebook page
Do you ever get overwhelmed with the quantity of information available on the web? Do you wonder where to start when trying to find out about a particular topic? Or where to begin to research for a presentation or project? I have been there. What I have discovered is, that sticking my search terms into google or yahoo yeilds vast and mind boggling results. Now I always start with a few trusted websites. Here, in no particular order, are my top 5 recommendations for childhood disability information:
CanChild is a non-profit research and educational centre located within the School of Rehabilitation Science at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Our research is focused on improving the lives of children with a variety of developmental conditions and their families over the lifecourse.
I am a big fan of CanChild. They have great resources for professionals and parents. They have an interesting and impactful research portfolio. The staff and associates are really helpful if you contact them.
The British Academy of Childhood Disability (BACD) is an organisation for professionals working in the field of childhood disability. It’s aims include: to promote the development of quality standards, guidelines for good practice in the field of child development and disability.
BACD website gives acsess to their newsletter archive for free. For most uptodate information and members contacts you can join for an annual fee of £30 or £40. Membership also gives a discount on the ‘Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology’ journal.
Contact a Family is a UK-based registered charity for families with disabled children offering support, advice and information. As well as supporting families the charity supports those who assist the families, including medical and educational professionals, local government workers and health workers.
I find contact a family really useful for condition and rare disease information. They have lots of downloadable parent information and a professionals enquiry service.
PenCRU is a childhood disability research team. We are a partnership between researchers, families and health care professionals. Working together, we aim to ensure that research addresses issues that are relevant to disabled children and their families and results in beneficial new treatments and services.
It’s fantastic to have a UK based children’s disability research team. Pleasingly they are working closely with parents and families as well as professionals. They have a great ‘What’s the evidence?’ section: http://www.pencru.org/evidence/
PubMed is a free search engine accessing primarily the MEDLINE database of references and abstracts on life sciences and biomedical topics. Medline includes bibliographic information for articles from academic journals covering medicine, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry, veterinary medicine, and health care.
If you are search for original papers or systematic reviews PubMed is a really useful free search engine. It searches the Medline database. This gives some protection as the quality of all included journals has been vetted by a medline selection committee.
As ever I’d love to hear from you. Let me know how you get on with the websites I’ve recommended. Join our facebook community Synergy-Now facebook community and pop in and say hello.
Twitter chats are live discussions hosted on twitter they are about a particular topic. They are identified by a hastag followded by a title of the topic eg #twitterchat. Different twitter accounts advertise and host regular discussions. Participating in a twitter chat has much value to offer health, care and education professionals.
Very often twitter chats are moderated (led) by experts on the topic. Frequently there is recommended reading and resources made available to help you prepare for the chat. Between them chat participants have a huge pool of knowledge which you can draw from. Aside from twitter chats themselves, conference organisers often encourage attendees to post using a specified #. If you cannot attend a conferance you can follow the # and get live updates on discussion and content. Following twitter chats transcripts are availble. You can take your time to look through, have follow up conversations and search for deeper information.
Twitter has no barriers to your participation. Accsess is equal whether you are a student, qualified 30 years, work in a prestigious university or volunter for a charity. Everyone can share their experience and opinion.
Twitter chats are a great way to get to know and form networks with people interested in the same field and topics as yourself. You can engage meaningfully with other professionals from across the country and the world. The twitter chat connection can be just the beginning.
Tips to help you join a twitter chat:
If you don’t yet have a twitter account follow my 3 easy steps: http://synergy-now.com/2017/02/216/
Find a twitter chat to join
We communities is a place to start for those in health.
Socialworkhelper is good for social care
UKEdchat is a suggestion for teachers
When you have found a twitterchat you’re interested in:
Open your twitter account a few minutes before it’s due to start
Enter the #title in your searchbar
Watch the twitter conversation as it progresses
If you want to join in remember to add #title to each tweet.
If this still feels daunting I can offer you some more help. I will be broadcasting myself on facebook live joining in a twitter chat this Thursday 23rd Feb at 8pm (GMT). I will try to show the nuts and bolts of the process. If you want to check out the twitter chat in advance enter this: #AHPsintoAction in your twitter search bar
To see this live broadcast join the synergy-now facebook community: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1419809981385746/
It’s not so long ago that I was completely baffled by twitter. But I have discovered it is a really useful tool for connecting and learning. It’s not as difficult as I thought. Here are 3 easy steps you can follow to get going.
1. Set up a twitter account
Go to www.twitter.com. Select ‘set up’ and then complete the log in details.
You will need an e-mail account and will have to choose a user name and password. When you have completed your details and confirmed your e-mail address you will have a twitter account. I have set one up in the name of New User so you can see what yours will look like.
2. Choose people / accounts to follow
Following leaders and influencers in your field will be really informative. When you follow someone everytime they tweet their tweets will appear in your home feed. This is how you follow someone. Enter the name of the person or organisation you want to follow in the search box on the top right (highlighted yellow). If they have a twitter account they should appear in a dropdown box below.
Click on the name indicated by the red arrow.
Their twitter profile page will come up. Click on the follow button (shown by the red arrow)
Repeat this process for all the individuals and organisations you are interested in hearing from. If you don’t know who to follow, here are some suggestions for the field of childhood disability:
- Kings Fund
- Council for disabled children
- Contact a Family
- We AHPs
- We CYP nurses
- OT talk
- Physio talk
- SEND Jungle
- McKeith Press
I’d suggest you schedule a regular time in your diary to read through the tweets posted by the accounts you have followed.
3. Search and read tweets containing key words you are interested in
You do this by using the hastag symbol #. Put the word or phrase you are interested in in the search box preceeded by # (do not use spaces or punctuation)
In the example above I have searched EHCP. When the results come up you can categorise the tweets you look at. In the example below I have clicked (in blue text) to view latest tweets containing EHCP.