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Speech and Language Therapist

Central & North West London NHS Foundation Trust
£41,659 to £47,672 a year per annum
Closing date
27 Sep 2022

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CBT Therapist / Other
Band 7
Contract Type
Full Time
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We are looking for two highly motivated and experienced band 7 speech and language therapists to lead the speech and language therapy services for adults with learning disabilities in the London boroughs of Harrow and Hillingdon.

This is a rare opportunity to take the lead in the development of a safe and efficient speech and language therapy service for adults with learning disabilities. These dynamic and autonomous roles require strong skills in leadership and innovation, in addition to previous experience of service development and delivery. We are looking for applicants who have a passion and commitment to working with people with Learning Disabilities and their carers.

Harrow and Hillingdon are vibrant, multicultural areas and are very easily accessible from central London on the Jubilee and Metropolitan Lines, taking around 25 minutes (Harrow) to 35 minutes (Hillingdon) to Baker Street station.

Main duties of the job

As the local lead for Speech and Language Therapy within the Learning Disability Team in either Harrow and Hillingdon, you would be responsible for the development and smooth running of SLT clinical pathways, supervising and training junior clinicians, in addition to managing a diverse and wide-ranging clinical caseload. As a part of the multi-disciplinary team you would provide advice and support to colleagues working with people with learning disabilities across the MDT and neighbouring services.

Candidates should have extensive experience of autonomously managing both dysphagia and communication caseloads. Relevant experience of service development and working as part of a multidisciplinary team is also required. Ideal candidates would preferably have some experience of working with adults with learning disabilities, though we would welcome applications from experienced therapists from other clinical areas who have a genuine interest in learning disabilities and are looking to develop their skills in this area. You would receive regular supervision and support from the Speech and Language Therapy Professional Lead in Learning Disabilities within CNWL, in addition to peer supervision with other LD SLT team leads in Brent and Milton Keynes.

About us

Come and join us and be one of the 1500 Therapists / AHP's in CNWL. We work in many different teams in both physical and mental health, as well as many specialist areas. You could have a career for life with us.

Personal and professional development is a high priority for the profession this enables us to invest in the development of our staff by providing excellent internal training as well as commissioning specialised external training and providing quality supervision. This ensures all our therapists / AHP's reach their full potential at every stage of their career. Our commitment to research, audit and evidence-based practice is made possible by our strong links with local universities and our CNWL AHP Research Network.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion are a priority for us in CNWL we expect staff to be culturally competent, reflective and open to culturally diverse CPD opportunities. We are working hard support the recruitment and development of staff from all protected characteristics and welcome applications from any interested applicants.

Band 7 staff enrich teams and the service with their managerial and clinical expertise. We recognise this and therefore view them as staff we are committed to fully supporting in their clinical and managerial development. There will be opportunities to lead on trust wide projects, shadow senior managers and become a clinical specialist through an ACP programme or advanced training.

Job description Job responsibilities

The successful applicant may have contact with patients or service users. As an NHS Trust we strongly encourage and support vaccination as this remains the best way to protect yourself, your family, your colleagues and of course patients and service users when working on our healthcare settings.

You should be highly will be skilled in the delivery of assessment, advice and intervention around communication and dysphagia for people referred to the service, their families and wider support systems. They will independently manage their clinical caseload and have excellent clinical governance skills.

As the local lead, you would be responsible for managing all SLT referrals to the team, including appropriate triage and allocation within the timelines outlined by the service. You will also be responsible for ensuring safe service delivery and caseload management across the SLT service, and will provide regular supervision to more junior colleagues. There will also be opportunity for recruitment and interview experience for vacant SLT posts within the team.

We are committed to supporting continued development of clinical specialisms in areas of interest relevant to this post e.g. autism, dementia, dysphagia, AAC, mental health, positive behaviour support etc. There is also scope for shadowing and training opportunities across neighbouring services including acute SLT services at local Hospitals, Adult Community SLT and paediatric services. You will be expected to contribute to the development of the wider community learning disability service including; input to new clinical pathways and Care Quality Improvement projects.

Please see job description for further details.

  • To use highly specialist clinical skills to manage and prioritise a complex caseload of adults with learning disabilities who present with communication and/or swallowing difficulties.
  • To provide highly specialist assessment of communication and swallowing problems, formulate a hypothesis using a high level of clinical reasoning and to give evidence of sound clinical judgements.
  • To develop and implement appropriate interventions or rehabilitation, as appropriate in the community settings.To apply specialist knowledge and skills to implement high and low technology alternative and augmentative communication aids with a range of service users.
  • To provide appropriate highly specialist intervention and evaluate outcomes.
  • To write comprehensive reports that are accessible to a range of professionals and service users, reflecting highly specialist knowledge.
  • To develop clear care plans, advice and information, based on best practice and to use highly specialist knowledge to inform clinical judgments for care management.
  • To ensure the service users and/or their carers and support workers are involved in the planning and prioritisation of their care plans.
  • To facilitate, wherever possible, the service users involvement in the process to ensure meaningful outcomes, taking into account the severity of their learning disability and their communication and/ or swallowing difficulties.
  • To provide advice and training to other professionals, carers, support workers and relatives regarding the safe management and care of patients with communication and/or swallowing difficulties to maximise the service users skills and reduce clinical risk.
  • To work collaboratively and liaise with a wide range of other professionals across a variety of locations and agencies
  • To adapt practice to meet individual service users circumstances, including due regard for cognitive ability, cultural and linguistic backgrounds and differences.
  • To demonstrate clinical effectiveness by use of evidence based practice and outcome measures, and maintain knowledge of current literature and developments within the specialist clinical field of communication and dysphagia within learning disability, which may at times include progressive conditions and dementia.
  • To supervise student placements and promote the area of learning disabilities within the Speech and Language Therapy profession

Person Specification Education and Qualifications Essential
  • Recognised degree in Speech and Language Therapy
  • Registered with HCPC
  • Registered with RCSLT as a qualified practitioner
  • Learning Disabilities, communication and dysphagia workshops and short courses
  • Post-graduate / intermediate dysphagia certification or relevant experience
  • MSc or equivalent post graduate study and training in specialist area
  • Membership of relevant Clinical Excellent Network or equivalent
Previous experience: Essential
  • Experience of carrying out highly specialist communication and swallowing assessments and intervention
  • Experience and skills in working with people with complex health needs such as epilepsy, respiratory difficulties, postural needs and dementia
  • Experience in participating in audit / research projects
  • Experience in leading and/or developing a service/component of a service
  • Experience of effective partnership working, with external providers and mainstream services in promoting socially inclusive opportunities for service users
  • Significant post qualification experience in working with adults with learning disabilities
  • Knowledge of the Positive Behaviour Support Framework
  • Experience and skills in working with people with behavior that challenges
Skills, Knowledge and abilities: Essential
  • Highly developed skills in the assessment and management of complex dysphagia
  • Knowledge and skills in using a range of communication assessment tools relevant to the client group
  • Skills in using a variety of communication interventions including high and low tech visual communication aids, Makaton signs, Intensive Interaction
  • Ability to work autonomously, on own initiative and under pressure to meet deadlines; & to make and action decisions independently within agreed time frames
  • Excellent communication skills i.e. written, verbal, listening and proficient use of up to date systems of communication i.e. IT systems, e-mail, telephone etc.
  • Computer skills (ECDL) to be able to complete electronic patient records such as Systm One, reports and presentations as appropriate to role
  • Ability to deal with sensitivities and complexities, using interpersonal skills
  • Effective leadership skills through the management of designated projects, audits and research
  • Ability to implement a range of therapy outcome measures, evaluate outcomes and apply to service improvement
  • Skills in supervising others including SLT students
  • Skills in producing timely, accurate and informative reports and notes
  • Excellent organisational skills to manage the demands of the role, including prioritisation of workload, delegation skills
  • Highly developed written and verbal presentation skills
  • Skills in developing and delivering training
  • Ability to regularly identify and undertake appropriate learning and development opportunities as part of ongoing CPD
  • Ability to ensure the application of risk assessment and risk management strategies which facilitates a service user's management
  • Ability to identify and effectively manage performance of self and others
  • Ability to maintain effective partnership working with resources both internal and external to the Trust.
  • Knowledge and application of national policies and procedures (relevant to the client group)
  • Knowledge of safeguarding policies and procedures
  • Experience in the application of the principles of clinical governance
  • Ability to work well as part of a multidisciplinary team
Personal qualities Essential
  • High level of personal motivation
  • Flexibility and creativity in approach
  • Demonstrate self-awareness and an ability to use initiati

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