More local children with hearing problems will now get the care they need quickly after Twickenham MP Munira Wilson opened a second paediatric audiology screening room at Teddington Memorial Hospital.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the official opening of the new children’s hearing screening room at the hospital run by Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare (HRCH).
The new, purpose-built, well-equipped, soundproof screening room meets national standards on noise level reduction. As a result, paediatric audiologists will be able to screen nearly 800 more patients a year at the hospital.
The service can also operate five days a week, which means it can see a greater volume of patients. This means new referrals will be seen more quickly, reducing the number of young patients on the waiting list.
It offers local parents the convenience of minimal travel and waiting times, their children are seen in comfortable, reassuring surroundings and staff now have all the facilities they need to deliver excellent care.
Audiologists from the hospital joined the opening ceremony, along with HRCH chief executive Jo Farrar and TMH League of Friends Chairman Reverend Simon Douglas Lane.
Jo Farrar said: “This is a fantastic extension to the Richmond audiology service and means we can help about 800 more children a year get the support they need close to home. We are extremely grateful for the continuing support we receive from the League of Friends, who made this possible.”
Staff are delighted with the new room, which has been refurbished to an extremely high standard, with funding of £67,000 from the League of Friends.
The new room means audiologists can now run two clinics alongside each other for children under three years old and over three years old. Every patient who was seen on Monday was there for the very first time.
Munira Wilson said: “I’m delighted to see the new children’s hearing screening room for myself – and to meet the team’s dedicated staff, along with some of the families and children they support. This transformation in Teddington Memorial Hospital’s audiology services will mean even more children in our community can be diagnosed and get the support they need.”
Reverend Simon Douglas Lane added: “Heartfelt thanks go to our many League of Friends supporters in the community who, by their efforts, have allowed us to fund this project. It is so important for the League to continue its fundraising efforts in the community, so we can continue to fund improvements to our beloved hospital.”
The League of Friends have funded several improvements at the hospital through community donations and fundraising, including the complete refurbishment of the reception area in the urgent treatment centre and new radiology equipment.
Good hearing is critical for a child’s comprehension and speech development, but hearing problems in young children are not always obvious. The audiology service screens children early on in life, to identify hearing difficulties and address them as soon as possible.
The service is now working towards accreditation under the new improved version 2 of the Improving Quality in Physiological Diagnostic Services (IQIPS) Standard. IQIPS is a professional assessment and accreditation scheme which recognises healthcare organisations that ensure patients receive consistently high-quality services, tests, examinations and procedures, delivered by competent staff working in safe environments.