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Evie's return to practice story


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.

'Every aspect of my emergency care was dealt with quickly, efficiently and professionally with full explanations and compassion from all staff involved'.

Patient, Emergency Department, Darlington Memorial Hospital