Duke opens new £2.8m listening for life centre
HRH THE Duke of Gloucester will today (October 15) open the £2.8 million Listening for Life Centre at Bradford Royal Infirmary.
The launch of the hi-tech facility comes as the Yorkshire Cochlear Implant Service – which serves patients from across the North of England - celebrates carrying out more than 550 implant operations.
Cochlear implants are small microprocessors, which can help many patients with deafness, hear. They can be used to treat some who are born deaf and can also treat adults and children who go deaf – for example, if they have had meningitis and become deaf as a result.
Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s Consultant Ear, Nose and Throat Consultant and Head of the Cochlear Implant Service, Mr Chris Raine, said: “I’m delighted the Duke of Gloucester is here today to officially open the new Listening for Life centre in Bradford.
“The implant service covers a wide area across the North of England and the new centre is vital if the service is to continue to maintain, develop and offer top-class medical treatment.
“Cochlear implants can open up a whole new world for patients as they enable deaf patients to hear and the centre is a fantastic facility for patients and their families to be treated in.”
The Duke, who is a trained architect, will meet hospital staff, hear presentations about the state-of-the-art facility and tour the new centre.
The centre uses the latest equipment to improve the diagnosis, rehabilitation and education of its implant patients.
The Duke will also meet patients and families from across Yorkshire who have benefited from cochlear implants, including the centre’s youngest ever implant patient who received her cochlear implant at just six months old.
Foundation Trust Chief Executive, Miles Scott, said: “The campaign to build the Listening For Life Centre began two years ago when a fundraising campaign was launched by The Ear Trust to support dedicated facilities for the Cochlear Implant Service.
“It’s brilliant to see the centre up and running and its work, in helping to bring the gift of hearing to so many across the region, increasing.”
The Ear Trust is the charitable organisation founded by ENT Consultant, Chris Raine, after the Foundation Trust agreed that the centre could be built in the grounds of Bradford Royal Infirmary. All surgery will continue to take place at the BRI.
Most patients being implanted are now children under five years old. Children with the implant are usually able to attend mainstream schools, make friends and lead relatively normal lives. Adults receiving the implants can continue with education and employment.
“The charity raised an incredible amount for the centre as they were determined that the service would have the best possible facilities on offer for deaf patients throughout the UK,” added Mr Raine.
“The work, drive and commitment shown by the Ear Trust volunteers was amazing and we are grateful for their continued support.”
The Bradford event will be also attended by the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Stephen Davidson, the Lord Mayor, Councillor John Godward, Trust Chairman, David Richardson and Trust Chief Executive, Miles Scott.