Sheffield Hospitals Charity has funded a six month pilot study to employ a Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) advisor at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals for patients who have suffered major trauma injuries.

The advisor offers free advice and support for patients on many issues including employment, self-employment, welfare benefits, debt, housing advocacy and returning to work.

Trauma rehabilitation staff hope the introduction of the service – aimed at those who have experienced a car accident, assault, fall, or who have sustained significant life changing injuries - will help patients focus on their rehabilitation.

Feedback has been very positive

Carl Page, Trauma Rehabilitation Coordinator, said: “The very nature of ‘trauma’ includes not just the patient’s physical rehabilitation, but also their mental and social needs. Having daily contact with patients who are being treated for major trauma, I experience first-hand the concerns and anxieties that many of them have.

“Dealing with the financial stress of being off work and its implications often has an effect on a patient’s mental state, engagement with rehabilitation and can potentially lead to a negative cycle of spiralling poverty.

“If we can tackle some of these issues during the early stages this will almost certainly lead to a better overall support for patients.”

Thanks to supporters of Sheffield Hospitals Charity, £3,500 of funding has been provided to cover the initial cost of an advisor for one day a week.

In the first month, more than 10 patients have been seen and feedback has been very positive. All patients have stated that the information provided was very useful and that they felt better able to engage with their rehabilitation. 

Donate to the care of patients with major trauma injuries here