Supporting people in rural and remote areas to remain active and healthy has many challenges and often requires some creative thinking to find solutions. A need for access to regular physiotherapy was identified. Unable to provide regular access to physiotherapists we researched offering physio digitally and were pleased to make contact with the founder of an online physiotherapy platform developed by Dr Lorna Paul, Glasgow Caledonian University.
We teamed up with Dr Lorna Paul and local physiotherapist Jessica Little to offer the Giraffe Healthcare online physiotherapy programme to our Centre members.
Funded by the Argyll and Bute HSCP, we are able to provide a 30 minutes physiotherapy assessment from which an individualised programme of exercises is selected, uploaded and viewed on individual’s own mobile devices.
Everyone using the Giraffe Healthcare programme can keep an online diary that can be accessed by the MS Centre staff team. They can also communicate through the Giraffe messenger service if they require any assistance.
We also offer a weekly physiotherapy group for anyone who can attend the MS Centre and who prefer exercising with peer support. The Giraffe class is fun and members benefit from the motivation and encouragement they receive from others.
Centre staff have developed an incentive scheme and select one winner each week who may be either completing their exercises online, in the group or as the case for many, doing both.
We are raising awareness and rolling out our programme across the community inviting members from other groups and organisations to join us including carers and adult members of our local Adult Resource Centre.
"I do my exercises regularly at home, although filling in comments doesn’t happen all that often. They are good and I am able to do them or have them adapted to suit me. 1st class”
“I have gained more confidence since embarking on Giraffe. The exercises set are ones that I can do and not become disheartened. I enjoy the class and the fact I can manage to cope. I look forward to making more progress”
“It’s a great programme …. My consultant at PDRU was very impressed with it and will discuss it with other patients who will benefit and will assess my progress at my next appointment with him”.
“It’s a great programme to have access to and I’m the envy of people in osteoporosis groups. I love being able to carry out a programme designed for me without worrying I’m going to damage myself. I try to do them regularly and the class is a point of contact and offers that extra support to keep motivated”.
“My online arthritis group are envious. It is unbelievable how many people are desperate for solutions like this”.