This week we're chatting with Senior Physiotherapist George Brassil, who joined the Guy Gold team in November 2022. George offers Physiotherapy here in Camden at our Treatment Rooms in NW1.
How long have you worked at Guy Golds & Associates?
I started working here in November 2022. I’m excited to working alongside the brilliant clinicians and instructors here at Guy Golds & Associates.
What is your favourite thing about working at Guy Golds & Associates?
The 5 out 5 reviews don’t do it justice. My favourite thing about working here is the community and culture of Guy Golds & Associates, which is thoughtfully curated by everyone who works here. There is great attention to detail, top spec facilities, and I don’t object to a cheeky pastry from the guys in the café every now and then.
What do you like best about working in Camden?
Diversity of people, from all walks of life, creativity, stories, history - unique London with beautiful greenery on the doorstep.
What made you decide to practice physiotherapy?
Short answer: a bit of luck – and probably a nudge from my tiger mum.
Long answer: not one decision but really a combination of life experiences.
When I was 8 years old my father had a heart attack. He had cardiac rehab to help him recover. As a child I thought it was amazing that my dad was seeing a physio to ‘heal his heart’ and that moving and exercising was the treatment to do that.
I volunteered at a rehabilitation centre in Dublin as a teenager helping patients attend activities and socialising with the patients and residents. The positive feedback from staff and patients pointed me towards a caring career.
I picked up a couple of injuries having rowed at a competitive level in secondary school and university. I was incredibly impressed with how physiotherapists communicated and took the time to explain what was happening with my body. I found being guided in how to rehab myself invaluable when it came to getting back to rowing.
As a senior physiotherapist I enjoy helping people reach their goals, coaching and supporting people return from sports injuries, as well as providing holistic care for people of all ages. I am very fortunate that I love what I do and no day is the same.
Why did you study in the Netherlands?
I learnt from researching physiotherapy degrees that Ireland and the UK have a more theoretical emphasis to teaching physiotherapy. I opted to travel to the Netherlands to complete the 4-year degree with a focus on implementing research and practical physiotherapy skills. As a practical learner I also wanted to learn from the best. It is no secret that the Dutch healthcare system is second to none and I’ve always enjoyed the adventure of traveling to new places.
I was also attracted to studying in the Netherlands as I could specialise, and did so in adults and chronic pain.
I successfully secured funding via an external organisation for my research in pre-frailty at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden as part of my graduation thesis. There I conducted research to identify measurement tools to identify pre-frailty as a means to provide early frailty intervention for better health outcomes in older people.
On top of my core degree, I gained a minor in applied positive psychology, was a class representative, and was selected to be part of the interdisciplinary Health Ageing Honours College.
Many of these opportunities would not have been possible in Ireland or the UK. I hope my demonstrated drive to work towards excellence in healthcare through early intervention, evidence based, knowledge and holistic approach provides my patients with excellent clinical outcomes.
How did you find the experience of treating patients during the pandemic?
Working in a large university hospital which became a surge site for covid patients meant finding new mental resilience. I worked on the intensive care unit, high dependency unit, palliative care wards, emergency surgery wards, and covid-19 wards helping patients wean off of ventilators, walk after being bedbound, and breathe without requiring oxygen as a respiratory physiotherapist.
Colleagues and patients commented on my skills for advocating for patients, and encouraging best practice through leading by example, while supporting fellow colleagues even in challenging times.
As the acuity of the pandemic reduced, I continued working across outpatient settings which meant new challenges such as social distancing, and virtual appointments. That said, I am glad as a society we are more flexible with individuals' needs to make an appointment the most comfortable for them, and to have a choice between virtual and face-to-face appointments.
I was redeployed to pelvic health, musculoskeletal (sports injury) outpatients, and paediatric hydrotherapy. These were areas of physiotherapy I developed a great passion for and continued to specialise in.
As a clinician the pandemic solidified my broad base of clinical knowledge while being true to my values of clear communication, patient centred holistic care, and striving for excellence.
Thanks to George Brassil for taking the time to chat today. If you'd like to book an appointment for Physiotherapy in Camden with George, or for treatments with any of our clinicians, you can do so on our Booking page.