The Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Stanmore received a grant of £4,000 from the Metropolitan Masonic Charity. It is the largest orthopaedic hospital in the UK and a leader in the field both in the UK and worldwide. Every 8 hours someone is paralysed by a spinal cord injury and currently there is no cure.
For wheelchair bound spinal injury patients, there is a challenge to find and take part in creative, innovative and engaging activities to fill their time. Very often normal equipment and facilities cannot be use by these patients and this is particularly true for those whose injuries have left them with no movement below the neck.
Emma Linley, Lead Clinical Occupational Therapist at the Spinal Injury Unit, commented: “Photography is a creative, innovative and rewarding pastime for patients. As with most technical facilities for those with limited mobility, the specialised and modified photography equipment is very expensive. The £4,000 grant from London Masons has allowed the hospital to purchase specialised cameras, camera supports and control mechanisms that can be used by those with very limited ways of operating a camera. The controls allow camera operation by mouth and tongue.”
The reality is that many with spinal injuries cannot afford even the basic essentials such as a suitable wheelchair or home modifications, the £4,000 grant is therefore assisting in giving spinal injury patients the opportunity to lead a fulfilled life.