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National Centre for Prosthetics and Orthotics (UK)

About The Centre

The National Centre was established in 1972. The Centre's interests in training, education and research span the fields of prosthetics, orthotics and related aspects of the provision of aids for the disabled.

The University base consists of custom made premises which include workshop, clinical examination and treatment areas, accommodation for staff and research laboratories. The Centre has a Siliconcoach gait assessment resource and associated motion analysis and computing equipment.

Equipment for interface pressure measurement and CAD/CAM is available.

A continuing responsibility of the National Centre is to maintain an awareness of world wide clinical research and development in its field. Funding is available within the department's general budget to support this activity. However, the Centre's primary purpose is to provide high quality training and education to health care professionals and students of the rehabilitation professions.

Prosthetics and orthotics is maturing as a professional activity and the growing importance of research has been recognised within the department by the encouragement of professionals wishing to conduct research leading to higher degrees. Information technology and manufacturing trends are also encouraging changes of practice. In particular, the introduction of computerised methods have now made possible totally new lines of investigation. Fundamental problems, once too distant to be clinical priorities, are now actively being considered. The Centre grew out from the University's Bioengineering Unit and retains these strong academic links.

The National Centre for Prosthetics and Orthotics is an internationally-known provider of undergraduate training and education within its field. The Centre provides vocationally-oriented courses to prosthetists and orthotists and the related healthcare professions.

This is accomplished through full-time and part-time, undergraduate, postgraduate, open learning and short post-experience courses. Between ten and fifteen short, post-experience programmes are organised each year. A continuing responsibility of the National Centre is to maintain an awareness of worldwide clinical research and development in the field. The Centre is funded by a grant from the Scottish Government. A proportion of the funding is allocated to clinically relevant research and development.