Brain injuries sadly affect more lives in the UK than one may think. According to Headway, one of the UK’s leading charities offering support to those who have suffered a brain injury, there were 348,453 UK admissions to hospital with acquired brain injury in 2016-17. That is 531 admissions per 100,000 of the population.
With statistics at that alarming level, one would assume that there would be consistent, streamlined rehabilitation offered to those who have suffered a brain injury. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Not only can this present a problem for those who are injured, but can also have a profound effect on the families and colleagues who are supporting the injured person. Minor brain injuries in particular can often go un-diagnosed for some time after the injury is acquired.
Sometimes, unless someone has suffered a ‘catastrophic’ brain injury, there can be very little support provided. This can sometimes stem from the fact that the medical focus may be placed on other injuries, such as orthopaedic injuries. Whilst an MRI or CT scan may not necessarily show a physical manifestation of a minor to moderate brain injury, the reality of the symptoms that may present after a ‘bump to the head’ can be serious and debilitating for the sufferer, and have a profound impact on the relationships they have with those around them.
Coupled with the fact that NHS resources are scarce, and can vary dramatically depending on geographical positioning, it is important that sufferers get early and appropriate rehabilitation and support. When someone has suffered a brain injury (be it minor to serious), it is important that this is not only identified early, but that there is an appropriate rehabilitation plan put in place.
When we are first instructed by clients who have a confirmed or suspected brain injury, our priority as solicitors is to ensure that this investigated appropriately as quickly as possible.
Niamh Hills is a Solicitor at Moore Blatch LLP who are a leading UK firm of solicitors specialising in accessing rehabilitation for those who have suffered major trauma. Moore Blatch LLP is the winner of the Rehabilitation First 2017 award for client service.