Centre for Behaviour Change


Clare Nicholson


Clare headshot

Pre Doctoral Student


Occupational Therapy for Functional Neurological Disorder 

Primary and secondary supervisors 




As part of a PhD proposal, Clare plans to develop a series of mixed method studies, applying implementation science frameworks to investigate what knowledge and resources are required to enhance Occupational Therapy (OT) practice and improve the patient experience of OT for people with FND. This investigation will inform the development of targeted OT interventions that are based on a biopsychosocial understanding of FND. Service user / PPI involvement will be central to the development and implementation of these interventions, which will clearly describe (and allow replicability of) specialist OT interventions for FND.  This body of work will be set up for future efficacy and effectiveness trials.    



Clare is a clinical specialist occupational therapist (neuro-sciences) and is the physical therapies clinical lead for the Functional Neurological Disorders Rehabilitation programs offered at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London. Clare completed a masters in clinical research at City University under the supervision of Dr Lorencatto in 2017. Her research dissertation entitled ‘Reported barriers & enablers to providing community-based OT to patients with Functional Neurological Symptoms: An interview study with OTs in the UK’ was published in The British Journal of Occupational Therapy in 2021. Skills gained during the MRes also guided Clare’s work in leading the development of international OT consensus recommendations for FND (lead author, published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, 2020). In September, 2022 Clare commenced an NIHR PCAF-Bridge pre-doctoral fellowship under the supervision for Dr Lorencatto.