London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Chelsea 1960

Annual report of the Medical Officer of Health for the year 1960

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The Centre for Spastic Children was established at 61, Cheyne
Walk in 1955, for the treatment and research of cerebral palsy in
the very young child. It is part of the Chelsea and Kensington
Hospital Group and has access to any facilities which may be
required in the other hospitals in the group.
About 65 children attend regularly for treatment at the centre,
either as out-patients, attending two or three days a week with
their mothers, or as full day patients, when they spend the days
in one of the two nursery classes or in the assessment unit,
receiving daily therapy as required. The classes are recognised
by the London County Council as a Special School and an outstanding
feature of the centre is this combination of educational and
medical care, the emphasis being on the latter.
A loop induction system has been installed in each class-room
and in the garden, so that children with hearing losses or defects,
may have an opportunity to be included with the normal hearing
children in group activities. A teacher of the deaf also takes
these children for individual tuition daily, and every child who
is accepted for treatment at the centre is given a full audiometric
An electroencephalographic department forms part of the
routine work of the centre every patient being tested by the
recordist as part of the initial examination.
The provision by the Association of Friends of the hostel for
the weekly boarding of children from a distance or from difficult
homes, and for a mother and child for a period of assessment and
advice, has continued to be a valuable asset to the centre and is
in constant use.
The provision of a therapeutic pool is under consideration
and it is hoped to start pool therapy for the children by the
summer of 1961.
Suitable children are accepted for treatment at the centre as
out-patients as soon after birth as cerebral palsy is diagnosed,
and may continue to receive treatment up to the age of seven, or
longer if necessary. Children are considered for admission to the
classes from the age of 2 up to the age of 7 years.

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