Ciara Long, an advanced rotational physiotherapist at Royal Brompton Hospital, has been awarded a physiotherapist fellowship from the Cystic Fibrosis Trust, making her only the second person in the UK, and the first in London, to be given the award.
Physiotherapy is a big part of everyday life for most people with cystic fibrosis (CF) which is why the CF Trust is keen to support physiotherapists through this fellowship to help them develop leadership qualities that will have an impact on the wider CF service.
The award of £50,000 will go towards funding Ciara to build on the training and experience required to develop a career specialising in CF care.
Ciara will use the funding to complete a project around the topic of sinus care for CF. Current guidelines for CF highlight that it as an important aspect of upper respiratory tract care with up to 67% of patients suffering from rhinosinusitis. Currently, there is no consensus on how to approach sinus care for CF which is why Ciara will investigate how patients can be screened locally and what suitable interventions they could be offered. This will involve her looking at what other CF centres across the country offer their patients and will conclude with the development of a local guideline for Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust’s CF department, outlining their management of sinus care.
Ciara said: “It’s a fantastic opportunity for me professionally, but also for the patients and the CF team here because everything I learn will be applied to positively impact patient care.
"I’m really looking forward to expanding my knowledge, enhancing my practice and furthering my exposure to research methodologies. All of this will enable me to provide the highest quality of care for patients as well as equip me with the experience to support future physiotherapists who may be interested in specialising in CF care.”
Laura Henderson, research development manager, said: “It’s a testament to Ciara personally and the CF research group at the Trust that Ciara has secured this award, making her only the second in the UK to do so. She stands among an already hugely successfully physiotherapy team who are torchbearers for non-medical respiratory research across both our hospital sites.”
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