New Centre for Child Health opens
Press release issued: 20 May 2003
The Centre for Child and Adolescent Health, a unique collaborative venture between the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England (UWE), was opened today by Professor Eric Thomas, Vice-Chancellor of Bristol University and Alfred Morris, Vice-Chancellor of UWE.
Housed in revamped premises on the site of the Old Homeopathic Hospital, Cotham, the Centre is a new multi-disciplinary academic centre staffed by a team of community paediatricians, community psychiatrists, academic nurses, researchers, lecturers and specialist registrars under the Directorship of Professor Alan Emond from the University of Bristol.
The Centre's research and teaching activity will focus on five main themes:
- Nutrition in early childhood
- Child development
- Palliative care for children and adolescents
- Children in need
- Childhood accidents
Researchers at the Centre will collaborate with other groups within the University of Bristol and UWE, and clinicians from local Health Trusts, the University of Bath, the London School of Hygiene, the Institute of Child Health in London and the University of Durham. The Centre also has strong international links with academic groups in Brazil, Jamaica, Nepal, Cambodia and Sweden.
Professor Emond said: "The official opening of the Centre marks the end of five years of negotiation and planning and heralds the beginning of an exciting new era in academic child health in Bristol.
"The health care of children is provided by many different professionals working in teams so it is essential these staff are trained together, and there are many areas of child health which need to be researched by multi-disciplinary groups.
"The team at the Centre have developed an academic plan which integrates teaching and research, and links with advocacy and policy development. We are looking forward to collaborating with other groups in Bristol and elsewhere in the UK, and further developing our international links."
Dr Nicola Eaton of UWE has been appointed as Reader in Community Children's Nursing. She will be working on key projects including nurses' management of pain in child cancer patients, evaluating children's palliative care and investigating peer support for children and adolescents with diabetes.
Dr Eaton said: "This post is very exciting for me. My postdoctoral research concentrated on evaluating child community nursing in Wales and I am particularly looking forward to working as part of the multi-disciplinary team.
"One project that will bring all team members together is a proposal to build awareness through specialist training for medical and nursing students on living with a child with disabilities. Medical students and nurses will spend time with families and give presentations on their findings. This kind of specialist training will give them insightful preparation and hopefully improve the service they can give patients and their families."
Matthew Ellis, consultant paediatrician and clinical lead in child disability and development in North Bristol, is delighted to be a contributor to the new Centre, saying: "A multidisciplinary Academic Centre is of relevance to the local NHS needs, ideal for developing holistic child research."