Action for Brain Injury Week 2023
15 May 2023
What a frightening statistic that every 90 seconds someone in the UK is admitted to hospital with a brain injury. When people hear the term “brain injury” they often think of the type of injury suffered in a car crash or an assault yet the term is much more far reaching. Brain tumours, infections, strokes and heart attacks are can also cause injury to the brain.
Action for Brain Injury Week runs every year to raise awareness and understanding of brain injury and by doing so helps to improve the lives of those who have survived an injury, their carers and family members as they learn to live with the imposed changes.
Carol Hopwood is head of our Serious Injury Team here at Carpenters Group. She is also the founder and secretary of Headway Sefton and a Public Governor at The Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust so she is very much involved in supporting those who have survived a brain injury.
We spoke to Carol about her experience and why raising awareness is so important:
“My first experience of someone with a brain injury was my grandad. He suffered multiple strokes which left him with both physical and neurological issues. I was a youngster at the time and all I could see was someone no longer able to run around with us, who slept a lot and who spoke like he was drunk. It was all a bit frightening and I didn’t really know what to say or do. No one in the family had any experience of brain injury and looking back now I realise that he got little support or rehabilitation and he just had to get on with it. Thankfully things have massively improved. We know more about the complex workings of the brain and how important good quality care and rehabilitation can improve long term outcomes.
We set up Headway Sefton in October 2014 to support survivors of brain injury but to also help educate friends and family so they could understand why their loved one had changed and how they could better support them. A community of support, social activities and practical assistance that has now grown to over 50 members. We have run educational sessions for DWP staff, the emergency services, employers and family members to help them to better understand brain injury and for employers to consider what adjustments could be made to retain a member of staff, to understand that time and patience is needed sometimes and that some people with a brain injury can continue to be good employees with the right support.
I am really proud that several members of my team here at Carpenters Group are also very involved with Headway Wirral and Headway Chester and so we are able to offer our local clients first-hand knowledge and experience of the benefits of being involved with Headway across the UK”.
If you or a loved one are living with a brain injury please do get in touch with your local Headway branch.
Carol Hopwood, Head of Serious and Catastrophic Injury