Caroline is a neurological occupational therapist with a wealth of experience working in specialist inpatient, outpatient and community neurological teams. Caroline is skilled in working with clients with complex conditions including ABI/SCI with additional mental health and complex social circumstances. She is focused on client need, empowering and engaging clients in the rehabilitation process. Caroline is passionate about supporting clients to progress throughout their case management experience.
Bachelor degree Occupational Therapy 2000
Caroline Plunkett qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 2000 in New Zealand. She has experience working in neurological rehabilitation in hospital, in-patient and community settings, both in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. She is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council, is a member of the British Association of Occupational Therapists and the Occupational Therapy (OT) Specialist Section for Neurological Practice.
Caroline began her career, and interest in neurology, working in rehabilitation for people over 65 years of age at Middlemore Hospital in New Zealand. She then worked in Older Persons mental health services, which included work in both an in-patient and outpatients service.
Caroline then worked in an inpatient neuro rehabilitation service at Middlemore Hospital, where she developed her clinical expertise in acquired brain injury, assessing and treating people experiencing a wide range of difficulties.
In 2004, Caroline worked in a community position working with young people with spinal cord injury, acquired brain injury, physical disability and learning disabilities. This service specialised in working with individuals who experienced difficulty engaging in mainstream health services. It had a strong emphasis on the importance of developing a therapeutic relationship with the client, working closely with families, and using an empowering approach to assist clients to achieve rehabilitation goals. Caroline developed skills in client centred goal setting, and monitoring and measuring outcomes related to goals. Caroline also carried out generic needs-based assessments providing recommendations for care, support and rehabilitation needs. She also prescribed equipment, including wheelchair and seating, aides, and made recommendations for home modifications
Within this role she also had the opportunity to work in vocational rehabilitation, performing work site assessments, developing return to work programmes with the client and employer, and implementing and monitoring these programmes. She appreciated the importance of effective communication with the client and employer, in order to ensure that the appropriate level of support and education was provided, and programmes are modified appropriately to ensure success.
In 2005, Caroline moved to the UK to work as a Senior 1 in a specialist neuro rehabilitation service in London. This involved working across two units, providing intensive assessment and treatment of individuals with moderate to severe brain injury. The role involved neuro rehabilitation, complex physical disability management, cognitive behavioural rehabilitation, and those who experience behavioural disturbance following brain injury
In 2010, Caroline was promoted to Lead Occupational Therapist gaining managerial expertise, and reviewing and developing the service alongside other members of the multi-disciplinary team. As the lead practitioner she was responsible for holding a complex clinical caseload, involving individuals with acquired brain injury, challenging behaviour, and those whose illness is further complicated by mental health difficulties, drug and alcohol misuse, learning disabilities, or complex social circumstances. Caroline also has experience working with, and assessing individuals, who lack capacity in domains such as treatment or discharge planning.
Caroline has extensive experience providing accurate assessment of an individual’s needs, risk identification and management, and providing appropriate recommendations for future care needs. She also works closely with families, co-ordinating rehabilitation and discharges, and accessing community services.
Caroline now works as a case manager for Tania Brown Ltd working with clients with complex neurological conditions. Caroline has case managed a varied caseload working with adults with spinal cord injury and brain injury, as well as complex orthopaedic conditions. Caroline brings a wealth of managerial and clinical skills to the role along with her approach to empower her case management clients, including her training in client-centred goal setting, her knowledge of outcome measures, her experience of working with families and her management of complex care packages which has led her to achieve successful active rehabilitation gains for her clients.
Caroline has attended numerous courses covering clinical skills and is committed to ongoing professional development. She completed her AMPS in 2004, is a Member of the London South Bank University CRB Panel, and has a Visiting Research Fellowship at the Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths University London.