Knowing what support a person needs and just what can be received to fund that support is vital for those living with brain injuries and their families, says a regional expert who was speaking out as part of a national awareness week.
Action for Brain Injury week, running until Sunday, is organised by the charity Headway and is dedicated to promoting proper understanding of all aspects of brain injury, on both individuals and their families.
In his role as a Senior solicitor specialising in clinical negligence at Wilkin Chapman solicitors, Jonathan Baker has extensive experience working with families in which individuals have suffered such injuries through negligent treatment.
Seeing first-hand the impact on all concerned, Jonathan stresses just how beneficial the right support can achieve.
“It’s important that those affected by brain injury (which includes the individual and the family) have access to good rehabilitation, local support from professionals and then from loved ones too,” says Jonathan, whose accreditation allows him to investigate clinical negligence cases involving brain injury in early life through Legal Aid funding. .
His work has raised Jonathan’s own awareness of the impact of brain injuries and he believes this week is about spreading that awareness message further.
“The impact of a brain injury, even a mild one, on not only the individual concerned, but their family too can be significant, wide-ranging and long-lasting. For example, one issue being highlighted is fatigue, which can impact on a whole range of activities, and in turn can lead to issues such as social isolation,” he explains.
Jonathan stresses how the correct advice and support at an early stage in a claim can really assist a family to get the help needed.
“In some of my cases, the rehabilitation that we have been able to facilitate for a client and their family has had a huge benefit, usually through the appointment of a Case Manager who recruits a whole host of rehabilitative professionals. However, this can typically only occur if liability for those injuries is admitted (at least in part) and we receive an early payment to put this support and rehabilitation in place,” he added.