Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist

Emma Jackson, a Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist for Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust, talks about treating children holistically in the community and the training and benefits that make the Trust a great place to work.

Emma _Jackson 320

"My job involves assessing, diagnosing and managing speech and language and communication difficulties in children. I work in a number of community settings to achieve this, including nurseries and children's centres. I also work with practitioners in nurseries to support them to identify and monitor speech and language difficulties. I also provide a range of training to support practitioners to develop language and communication in classroom activities such as story time.

"I've been working here for three and a half years and I absolutely love the community aspect of what I do, as it means I can work with children holistically. I know that other Trusts don't necessarily have policies of visiting children at nursery or at home, but I think it's really beneficial to enable to the right treatment for children and it's great that Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust is so proactive in this way.

"My job is very rewarding. Monitoring the language development of under 5s and referring them for speech and language therapy early on can only have positive outcomes for children - it really does give them a better start in life. I bumped into a child recently who I discharged two years ago after he'd received language therapy and he now has fantastic language skills. It just shows what a difference early intervention makes.

"I also get some really positive feedback from the families I work with. In one particular instance, we worked with a child with quite complex difficulties from the age of two, right up until he was at the stage to move mainstream school. His language difficulties had mostly resolved by this time and his mother told me she felt so lucky she lived in one of Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust's boroughs because of the quality of the support he had received from such an early age.

"Working for Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust is great on more than a professional level. I've had the opportunity to undertake training courses that carry real weight in the speech and language therapy arena. This includes The Lidcombe Programme for working with children who stammer and 'It Takes Two To Talk' - the programme helping to develop awareness and strategies among parents of children who have a language delay.

"The employee health service run by Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust provides a brilliant service too - employees can be seen by occupational health advisers quickly and flexibly. It's quite amazing. I've also been lucky enough to take a six month career break to go travelling since I've been working here, and I also took advantage of the reduced rate travel vaccinations the Trust offers employees. I live locally so cycling to work is a great option and I used the Trust's Cycle to Work scheme to make this happen.

"One of the most important parts of working in the community is taking the time to problem solve, ensuring children are getting the treatment they need. The opportunities for health promotion, skilling up parents and the joint working between healthcare and the education system are also vitally important and it's fantastic to be able to bring about real and positive change through my role."


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