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Evie's return to practice story

Evie

Evie is part of our allied health professionals here at #TeamCDDFT and she has kindly shared her return to practice story.

My name is Ewelina Oborska (Evie). I work as a band 5 physiotherapist for County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust (CDDFT), at Darlington. Let me take you through my story which begins in 2011.

 

I graduated as a physiotherapist in Poland - 5 years of study finalised, a dream come true for a newly graduated AHP.

Evie graduation

 

The next steps weren't that obvious in my case.

 

My husband was already abroad, working as electrical engineer in the UK. I decided to join him. Unfortunately, my English was not up to scratch. Physiotherapy in Poland was not a regulated medical profession at this time so I didn't have a PIN number and my only experience came from study placement.

 

Due to my circumstances, I decided to look for a job as a HCA. I worked in health care residential/nursing institutions for few years until I applied for a job in the NHS. I tried to find a job as a physiotherapy assistant but was unsuccessful.

 

I joined CDDFT in 2015, starting as an ophthalmology band 2 HCA. I worked with a lovely team and gained extraordinary experience.

 

In 2019, I decided to come back to physiotherapy. At this time I had two children and a HCA job, and I applied for a band 3 physiotherapy assistant post in the stroke service. Although I was not successful, I was offered a band 2 physiotherapy assistant job instead which I accepted and begun my dream journey.

 

After a few months on the stroke ward, I gained enough experience and progressed to a band 3 physiotherapy assistant role in the inpatient service.

 

From the beginning, I was encouraged and supported by CDDFT to apply for HCPC physiotherapist registration. As physiotherapy was finally regulated as a medical profession in Poland, I applied for my Polish PIN number.

 

I contacted an agency "ABRAM" which supports international HCPC registration in the UK. Being helped and guided, I gained my UK HCPC registration in October 2020.

 

CDDFT offered me a developmental temporary post as a band 5 physiotherapist in the frailty service, at Bishop Auckland Hospital. They are fantastic people, and I found it to be an amazing experience and their support and teaching allowed me to gain more confidence.

 

In November 2021, I got my permanent rotational band 5 physiotherapist post. I moved to the orthopaedic ward where I am still today and supported by an amazing team and leaders.

 

Although the road was bumpy and stressful, with a lot of determination and passion, I was finally given a chance to begin my professional physiotherapy career.

 

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all CDDFT physiotherapists for their guidance, knowledge and patience. I am extremely proud to work with you and have a chance to improve the lives of the patients we care for.

'As I was very, very nervous, I must have been the worst patient ever and they were brilliant with me and I can't thank them enough - could you please pass on my sincere thanks.'

Patient, Hysteroscopy Unit, Chester-le-Street Community Hospital