“If you saw me now you wouldn’t think there is much wrong with me, and there is not much I cannot do”, said Jeffery Dabner, who needed specialist support from HCML to rebuild his life after catastrophic injury.
The out of hours night controller was dealing with numerous complex pelvic fractures, including damage to his sacroiliac joint and left femur which left him with ongoing pain and discomfort, muscle tensions, stiffness, a reduced range of movements and a shortened leg.
His care journey improved considerably when he met his case manager, Di, from HCML, by which time he was on crutches. Her mission was to ensure he made the best possible recovery and help him maximise his independence.
He had been struggling to get NHS support with physiotherapy until Di came on board. She arranged sessions of private physiotherapy care, and, after assessing his needs in terms of his physical and psychological wellbeing, found him a personal trainer and ensured he had all that he needed.
Her mission was to help Jeffery and his wife, who both live in Dartford, Kent, on a journey of recovery from the trauma and challenges of the accident, and that included ensuring he was getting the best medical, psychological and practical support, and good communications.
His physical treatments enabled him to walk more easily, get his pain down to an acceptable level, reduce stiffness in his muscles and tissues and tackle an upper body tilt.
Jeffery, who can walk more easily and is now driving again, and who is intent on enjoying his retirement, said he would score HCML ten out of ten and would always recommend them, “100 per cent”.
He is learning to live with having one leg shorter than the other, where Di has helped him out with specialist footwear, but he is driving for up to an hour and as his wife said, “it could have been a hell of a lot worse.”
Jeffery said: “Thanks to Di it all went very well and it ended very well considering where I was at the time. I have some limitations and a bit of pain here and there but there really isn’t much I can’t do.”
Like all case managers, Di needed to be organised and proactive, as the role typically involves juggling and co-ordinating different service providers, the NHS included, and interested parties, such as the employer, insurer and solicitor, trouble-shooting if problems got in the way of Jeffrey’s recovery.
She also needed to communicate clearly and ensure that the couple understood what was happening on their behalf.
“Di kept me informed of everything and was always available if I needed her and she made everything clear”, added Jeffrey.
As with all people experiencing the trauma of serious and catastrophic injury, HCML needed to be alert to Jeffery’s psychological wellbeing and for Jeffrey this was a definite area of strength.
“I had a couple of downtimes and Di was there and sorted some counselling out and she was there to take care of me and support me. I just can’t sing her praises enough.”
HCML know just how critical it is to support the family of the injured individual, and Mrs Dabner said how she appreciated it: “From my point of view, Di was brilliant, she really helped us in every aspect and was just so caring and really got to know my husband. Without her we would have been quite stuck but she put everything in place.”