My professional background is in occupational therapy, and I have worked as a therapist and team manager since 2004 in a variety of settings including inpatient, residential units and community. For six years I worked as an OT in Melbourne in Australia, and returned to the UK in 2013. At present I work in a community stroke team in Devon and also provide consultancy and training round the APM.
I developed an interest in research in general and quantitative outcome measurement in particular during my initial BHSc (OT) degree at York St. John (UK). Later, in Melbourne, I completed a Masters in Public Health (La Trobe University) with a focus on quantitative methods for evaluating allied health input. Like most people, I believe strongly in the power of science and research to make human life better, and was keen to understand this complex area better through my postgraduate studies, and perhaps even contribute to knowledge in my own field through research.
I never really intended to develop an outcome measure – in fact for many years I believed that a comprehensive, responsive outcome measure of activity performance and participation was not possible due to the huge range and many forms of human activity. But once I realised the potential power offered by statistical software, I started jotting ideas on rating performance on the back of envelopes for my own interest. I continued to work as a therapist in the community, and this gave me many opportunities to observe and try to understand how people were adapting activity performance and participation in response to health problems. Little by little what is now the APM emerged.
Prior to being an OT I worked as a journalist and a translator, spending several years in both the Netherlands and Belgium as well as the UK. In addition to my keen interest in quantitative outcome measurement in healthcare, I have a number of less demanding hobbies including listening to jazz, cooking, hiking, travelling, playing bass and hanging out with friends and family.
Last but by no means least, I would also like to say thank you to a number of people for their various contributions at key points including Dr. Priscilla Robinson, Dr. Leila Karimi, Frances Wright, Val Sparkes (“Jenny” in the case study), Paul and Paul (in that order) of Shooters Media and Dr. Dipankar Dutta.