What is a physiotherapy expert witness?
Physiotherapy helps to restore movement and function when someone is affected by injury, illness, or disability.
Physiotherapists often work alongside people affected by a variety of conditions such as:
- Neurological (e.g. following stroke, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s).
- Neuromusculoskeletal (back pain, whiplash, sports injuries, arthritis).
- Cardiovascular (rehabilitation after a heart attack).
- Respiratory (asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis).
Physiotherapists often directly treat patients through specific massage techniques, exercise regimes and hydrotherapy. They may also be involved with recommending a programme of treatment or rehabilitation and with managing relevant services.
Why might you need to instruct an physiotherapy expert witness?
Physiotherapy expert witnesses can be instructed in a variety of cases in both civil and criminal proceedings. This may include cases of clinical negligence and personal injury. Physiotherapists may be asked to give an opinion in criminal cases, for example whether an individual would have been capable of committing an alleged crime in the context of their physical injury or disability. Physiotherapy Needs Reports may be requested in order to establish the needs of children or vulnerable adults and whether these needs are met by the relevant health, social or educational provision in place. These reports must provide a clear indication of the individual’s current and likely future physiotherapy needs including equipment, therapy, and associated costs and length of time required.
An example of a case requiring expert evidence from a physiotherapist would be to establish the extent of an individual’s needs following a back injury sustained during manual handling in the workplace. This would include the type and length of time of recommended therapy to restore/improve movement and pain, equipment needed to sustain daily function and associated costs (quantum).
What experts does Expert Court Reports have?
Dr Augustine Aluko is an experienced musculoskeletal physiotherapist who provides expert evidence in criminal and civil proceedings. His expertise includes musculoskeletal injuries, orthopaedics and sports injuries. Dr Aluko is instructed by the legal profession for civil cases and various police forces across the country, being an expert for the National Crime Agency. Cases undertaken include clinical negligence, breach of duty, personal injury, inappropriate treatment/touching, professional standards/misconduct and joint expert meetings.
Mr Multazim Zia is a clinical director in physiotherapy who provides expertise in medico-legal reports, rehabilitation, musculoskeletal injuries, personal injuries, care needs and acute/chronic conditions. Mr Zia has dealt with a range of conditions such as (but, not limited to): whiplash, sprains, strains, impingements, degenerative issues, back pains, tendinopathies and neuromuscular problems.