AHP Support Workers
Support workers, senior support workers, assistants and assistant practitioners work in, with and alongside the allied health professions (AHPs), providing high quality, life changing care across a range of acute and community services.
What is it like being an AHP Support Worker?
Physiotherapy Assistant Practitioner
Royal Papworth Hospital, Cambridge
Tell us about your role and the difference it makes to patient care?
Currently I work as a Physiotherapy Assistant Practitioner (PAP), however also studying a Masters Apprenticeship in Physiotherapy and Leadership. As a Practitioner I work on various wards such as Transplant, Thoracic, Chest medical unit and Cystic Fibrosis seeing various conditions in a Cardiothoracic setting.
The PAP role allows myself to have autonomy over my patients care to develop them to ensure safe discharge home. As a trust, patients get seen daily and having a PAP role alongside the Physiotherapy team allows all patients to gain adequate sessions and feel benefit from each session without much time restraints. The apprenticeship has allowed me to broaden my knowledge within Physiotherapy so that I can identify any potential deterioration and escalate to a Physiotherapist, however also it allows my clinical reasoning behind patient sessions to be improved leading to more diverse and specialist care.
What attracted you to being a support worker?
From completing a degree in Sport and Exercise science prior to joining Papworth, I have always wanted to use my knowledge and skills to help people who need it the most. Therefore a hospital role was appropriate for me. However due to knowing I needed further qualifications to develop and progress my career, a support worker role allowed me to gain access to the NHS in order to start that experience and career path.
What would you say to others to encourage more people to become AHP support workers?
It allows you to become more autonomous with patient care and treatment. It provides a pathway for career development. Don’t feel that at this role you are stuck, more options are becoming available for career development… be proactive!