Jane Symonds, the Clinical Lead and Watford Site Manager of spinal cord rehabilitation centre Neurokinex, has been shortlisted for an award in the prestigious Spinal Injuries Association’s Rebuilding Live Awards 2017.
The Rebuilding Lives Awards recognise the outstanding achievements of individuals and groups in the spinal cord injury community. Jane was nominated for the ‘Award for Innovation In Care’ which recognises healthcare professionals who have made a significant difference to the spinal cord injured community with their innovations or continuous improvements.
“The moment I stepped through the door I knew Neurokinex was offering extraordinary opportunities,” says Jane who discovered Neurokinex in April 2014 while working in the Stanmore Spinal Unit. “A major frustration for me was seeing the superb work being done with in-patients at specialist rehab centres being largely in vain. After being discharged, they effectively fell off the edge of a cliff with no access to specialist on-going care. It broke my heart to see patients lose their motor skills and gain weight due to lack of exercise.”
Experiencing this himself, Harvey Sihota created Neurokinex to help people with a spinal cord injury find ongoing, progressive rehab. Neurokinex’s activity based rehab involves the entire body: including below the point of injury. Every client is out of their wheelchair and moves around the gym working at different stations.
Since Jane joined Neurokinex, the number of rehab hours being undertaken at its sites has doubled. She was also instrumental in setting up its successful NHS referral programme that has seen more than 50 referrals in its first few months alone.
“Jane is an absolute driving force behind Neurokinex: without her we wouldn’t be where we are now,” says Harvey. “Her commitment, attention to detail and deep understanding of what we can achieve has been vital to our progress.”
Jane will attend the SIA Rebuilding Lives Awards lunch on June 6, 2017 where she will hear if she has won the Award. “It is a privilege to be shortlisted and whatever the outcome on June 6, having our work at Neurokinex recognised by the Spinal Injuries Association is an achievement in itself,” says Jane. “The demand for our services is growing but we still need more people to know about the possibilities we can give those with a spinal cord injury. Being shortlisted by the SIA is both an honour and opportunity for Neurokinex and I’m delighted.”