Connect Health bolsters expanding senior clinical team with the appointment of consultant physiotherapist Gail Sowden

Connect Health is pleased to welcome internationally renowned specialist in pain rehabilitation, Gail Sowden, as consultant physiotherapist for the Central Region.

2 March 2020


Connect Health is pleased to welcome internationally renowned specialist in pain rehabilitation, Gail Sowden, as consultant physiotherapist for the Central Region


As the UK’s largest, independent provider of integrated community MSK (musculoskeletal) and pain services, Connect Health is further investing in building the clinical and operational structure and this appointment adds an additional level of expertise within the field of pain management, straddling both clinical and academic arenas.

Gail brings extensive expertise in MSK, pain and vocational rehabilitation. She has been a consultant physiotherapist within the NHS for over 14 years, initially as the physiotherapy lead for a spinal extended scope practitioner service and then in 2008, she was instrumental in establishing an award-winning interdisciplinary pain service.

Commencing the role on 2 March, Gail Sowden, Consultant Physiotherapist said

I am passionate about improving the quality of care for people with musculoskeletal pain through supporting clinicians and services to deliver cost effective evidence-based care and through empowering patients to actively self-manage.

“This is an exciting time to be working in the field of pain with developments in the role of experts by experience, digital health and greater integration between physical and mental health services. I relish the new challenge of working with Connect Health to further these and other opportunities”

A passionate advocate of supporting Nurses and Allied Health Professionals to develop psychologically informed practice, Gail was an author on the STaRT Back research publications (Lancet, 2011; Sowden, 2012) and has subsequently undertaken research collaborations, training and implementation work both nationally and internationally in relation to stratified care.

Steve Nawoor, Deputy Director of Clinical Delivery & Consultant Physiotherapist, Connect Health commented on the appointment

We are excited to welcome Gail to the Connect Health senior clinical team, demonstrating our growth and ongoing investment in talent management. Bringing with her a wealth of expertise in terms of persistent pain and her association with the British Pain Society, we are confident that Gail will support, develop and innovate in that area.

Gail will predominantly be based in the central region and will contribute to the national clinical delivery model alongside the senior clinical and operational teams.

Serving as chair or a member of a number of national committees and project groups (for example the British Pain Society Academic Scientific Committee, Physiotherapy Pain Association, Faculty of Pain Medicine, International Association for the Study of Pain) has given Gail the opportunity to contribute to the development of national pain policy and practice including national standards, competencies and clinical guidelines.

Gail thrives on the energy and interaction of working in interdisciplinary pain teams and is the current Chair of the British Pain Society’s Pain Management Programme SIG Committee.

In addition, for the last 14 years, Gail has worked in the clinical trials unit at Keele University, where she has been involved in world leading musculoskeletal research. She has also developed tools, innovations and resources to support the implementation of key research findings into policy and practice, via her role within the Impact Accelerator Unit and is a NICE Fellow Alumni.


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