Her Majesty The Queen formally opens the Royal National ENT and Eastman Dental Hospitals 

19/02/2020 00:00 
Her Majesty The Queen has formally opened the Royal National ENT and Eastman Dental Hospitals today.

The new facility is one of the biggest specialist centres in Europe for dental, ear, nose, throat, hearing and balance services. It has been treating patients since October 2019.

Her Majesty saw first-hand the work being carried out across the facility’s specialties, visiting the adult dental treatment floor, the paediatric treatment floor and the auditory implant centre. The Queen met patients who have benefited from the hospitals’ care and staff, including dental and ENT clinicians, who showcased the units.

On the paediatric floor, Her Majesty met children and families taking part in creative health play sessions, pictured above. These sessions are used to prepare children for treatment, often to help with pre-treatment anxiety, and to teach children about their condition. They are overseen by play specialists and nurses.

Among the children who were waiting eagerly to meet The Queen was a seven-year-old boy called Arman who lives in Stanmore.

Arman was diagnosed with molar-incisor hypomineralisation, which is a tooth condition which causes the enamel to be softer than usual, leading to tooth decay, sensitivity and discolouration. “We were referred to the Eastman Dental Hospital which has helped treat this condition and prepare a plan so his adult teeth can develop correctly. We have been very impressed by all staff and are sincerely thankful for their help,” said Arman’s mum, Samira.

Aaliyah, pictured below, who is 11 and lives in Luton, presented The Queen with a posy. Aaliyah has had impaired hearing since birth and wore hearing aids until 2019 when she had her cochlear implant surgery.

Aaliyah said: "I can now hear many more sounds: rain drops, the wind blowing, the sound of leaves crunching under my feet, water running from the tap and a car engine running. These sounds were all new to me. I was a little wary at first because I don't like needles and I had to have a cannula for the surgery. Waiting for the switch on was also hard because I couldn't wear my hearing aids while I was healing from the operation so I had to rely on people who could sign to have a chat. But now I'm happy I can hear so much better which means I can also communicate more."

Marcel Levi, chief executive of UCLH, said: “It was a privilege to be able to show The Queen our new facility. I am immensely proud of our staff and the care we provide our patients. Our newest hospital has the very latest technology, new treatment rooms for complex ear, nose and throat procedures, dental chairs and imaging equipment. It can offer the world's most advanced treatment and represents the NHS at its very best.”

The new facility brings together two existing hospitals (Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital and Eastman Dental Hospital) with a combined history of more than 230 years.

Both hospitals, until recently situated on Gray’s Inn Road, have been involved in “firsts” – for example setting up the first clinic for the treatment of children whose teeth do not develop and establishing the cochlear implant service in the UK.

They have strong track records in ground-breaking research and developing new ways to treat rare and complex conditions.

The new £100 million hospital will host more than 220,000 appointments each year. The new facility has 84 dental chairs and more than 60 clinic and testing rooms. There are 10 procedure rooms for more complex surgical treatments, and hearing and balance rooms with specialist testing equipment.

An entire floor is dedicated to children and young people. Eye-catching artwork and colourful designs are currently being installed on that floor.

With the latest technology, new dental chairs and imaging equipment, the new hospital shows the NHS at its very best. The building has been designed to maximise clinical space, while providing light and airy areas for patients.

Watch a video of the visit, produced by The Royal Family Channel, below:

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