"I loved the fact we could share the fantastic achievement of Frank, not only in raising over £300,000 for the NHS, but also about his life and his family and their incredible story."
Frank Mills, a 6 year old boy with Spina Bifida, hit the national news in 2020 when, inspired by Captain Tom, he raised an incredible £300,000 for the NHS by walking 10 meters a day with his frame. His incredible fundraising effort also earned him an award from Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Frank's physiotherapist, Neil Gokani was invited to participate in an interview for BBC Radio Bristol ...
'I'm Frank’s physiotherapist and I was recently asked to be involved in a radio documentary for BBC Radio Bristol which told Frank’s incredible story. Frank has ongoing medical needs associated with his Spina Bifida which means he receives quite a high level of input from our MDT team. His Mum, Janet was keen for me to be involved and so this seemed like a great opportunity to both acknowledge the family's commitment to Frank's therapy, as well as promoting the Community Children's Service.
After gaining approval for the interview from my manager and my employer's Communications Team, I was interviewed by Tom, a BBC journalist about Frank, and about my role and the work I do as a Children’s Physiotherapist. I was quite nervous beforehand, but I had support from the Communications Team which was extremely reassuring. As Tom asked me questions it became really easy to talk about Frank because he is such a pleasant boy, and he and his family are a joy to work with. I do though recall finding it particularly odd talking about a patient and their history in public, despite having had consent from his family to do so. The whole experience was really interesting.
Listening back to the recording during the Christmas holidays was a lovely experience and was a real insight into his whole life which I was able to share with my family. I loved the fact we could share the fantastic achievement of Frank, not only in raising over £300,000 for the NHS, but also about his life and his family and their incredible story.
One of my managers also commented that it was great to hear a light and positive story, amongst the challenges and sadness brought by the pandemic.
Frank is an amazing young man and I’m so pleased to be involved in the documentation of his story.'
Neil Gokani is a Specialist Paediatric Physiotherapist for Sirona Care and Health working in an NHS Children's Community Service in Bristol. He is an APCP member and recently joined the APCP South West Region Committee.