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Right Arrow Mayor and Mayoress visit Regional Spinal Injuries Centre
14 December 2006 at 09:34
On Thursday 7th December the Mayor and Mayoress of Sefton, Councillor Tommy Mann and Mrs Jean Lilley, visited the Regional Spinal Injuries Centre at Southport & Formby District General Hospital. Earlier in the year they had attended the 25th Anniversary celebrations of the Spinal Injuries Unit Action Group, and they had expressed an interest in seeing more of the work of the Centre and meeting some of the staff and patients.

They were greeted by Mr Pradip Sett, Clinical Director for the Spinal Injuries Centre and other members of the staff. They were first of all given a demonstration of the new partial weight-baring treadmill and met some of the people whose generosity had enabled the Centre to buy the equipment. It is used to help patients with spinal cord injuries with their early rehabilitation.

Those who had donated money were Ian Stallard, and Howard Massam who separately rode from Lands End to John O’Groats and Stephen Cronin who was a patient on the unit some years ago who made a major donation.

The Mayor and Mayoress then visited the occupational therapy (OT) department, where they met some of the staff and patients and were shown some of the ways the patients can be helped during their rehabilitation. This includes the use of assistive technology, for example, computer based systems for communication and leisure and vocational activities. The OT department has a particular expertise in developing appropriate man/machine interfaces for those who are unable to use a normal keyboard and mouse. These include muscle-sensor switches, mouth operated mice and so on.

The Mayor and Mayoress were also shown the Heavy Workshop, where patients are taught basic wheelchair maintenance and where the OT department can carry out repair work on wheelchairs.

They then went on to the ward and again spoke with patients and staff. Finally they were shown the gym facilities for use by the patients and were given a demonstration on assisted locomotion. This involves a machine called a Reciprocating Gait Orthosis that enables a patient to stand upright and ‘walk’, which benefits the patient in a number of ways, both physically – it helps with circulation, bone density, the digestive system – and also psychologically as it can increase a patient’s self esteem by allowing them to be ‘normal’ height again, even just for a short while.

Notes to Editors

Photo shows:
The Mayor and Mayoress together with (from l to r)
Ian Stallard; Colin Ratcliffe, Rehab Technologist; Mrs Jean Lilley, The Mayoress; Stephen Cronin; Cllr Tommy Mann, The Mayor; Mr Pradip Sett; Kate Roberts, Physiotherapist and Paula Davies, Senior Physiotherapist. Behind them demonstrating the treadmill is Jo Leslie, Physiotherapist.

Issued by Matthew King, Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust.

Enquiries to: Matthew King Tel: 01704 704714
E-mail: matthew.king@southportandormskirk.nhs.uk