The third annual Bridges Symposium was held on 3rd May 2012 at St Georges, University of London. The aim of the event, which attracted 120 participants including stroke survivors, health and social care practitioners and academics, was to look at the impact of life after stroke from different perspectives.
Dr Fiona Jones opened the event by welcoming participants, and giving a brief overview of projects Bridges have been working on over the last year, including developing a Bridges Carers’ Booklet and obtaining funding to run a feasibility randomised controlled trial in London.
Professor Tony Rudd, the London Stroke Clinical Director, began the presentations by setting the scene of the symposium with a comprehensive overview of the London strategy for life after stroke. Researcher Portia Woodman then presented her ongoing PhD research about ‘the things that stop people doing what they want to do post stroke’, which was complemented by an inspirational presentation by stroke survivor Diana Marsh, who had been interviewed by Portia as part of her research and talked about the barriers she experienced after having a stroke.
Bridges research assistant Nicki Bailey presented the results of the recent ‘Bridges Kingston Project’, which aimed to improve continuity of care for stroke survivors in Kingston by training practitioners working in health and social care teams along the whole stroke pathway. Olivia Kemsley, one of the physiotherapists trained during the Kingston project, presented on how her team were using Bridges in practice in the acute setting. The last of the presentations was given by Dr Caroline Ellis Hill, an occupational therapist and Senior Lecturer at the School of Health and Social Care in Bournemouth. She talked about her world-renowned research on ‘life threads’ and identity after stroke, and the development of a new approach using art and encouraging creativity in stroke rehabilitation. The presentations were followed by a drinks reception, giving participants the opportunity to meet each other and reflect on self-management after stroke.
London Strategy for life after stroke’ by Professor Tony Rudd
‘The things that stop people doing what they want to do post stroke’ by Portia Woodman and Diana Marsh
‘Bridges through the stroke pathway’ by Nicola Bailey
‘Bridges at Kingston Acute Stroke Unit’ by Olivia Kemsley
‘Life threads and identity following a stroke’ by Dr Caroline Ellis Hill
This event attracted the largest number of participants at a Bridges symposium so far, and feedback from attendees was really positive. 82% of people who filled out an evaluation form rated the symposium as ‘excellent’. Here are some comments from evaluation forms submitted on the day:
“I am glad I came. A very useful and informative day. A lot to take away!”
“The range of speakers and topics gave a general overview of the wider relevance, implementing along the pathway, as well as clinician and patient experience. Excellent!”
“I feel revitalised to use the workbook again and will encourage it more with my colleagues”