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10 January 2012, 13:28
A unique £10 million centre for sport and exercise medicine is to be set up in the East Midlands as part of Olympic-year government plans to promote health and fitness.
A consortium of six partners from hospitals and universities in the region will run the centre. It will be a hub of research into sports and exercise injuries and conditions associated with lack of exercise and its work will be shared with the NHS nationally to deliver real health benefits to the UK population.
Doctors and researchers from the Nottingham and Leicester University Hospital NHS Trusts and the Universities of Nottingham, Loughborough and Leicester, as well as the Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust will collaborate at a purpose-built centre on the Loughborough University campus.
The centre will treat exercise-related injuries but will also help people to use physical activity to cope with existing medical conditions such as diabetes. The centre will be one of three hubs nationally, representing a total of £30 million in Government funding and which together will form the country's first ever National Sports and Exercise Medicine Centre of Excellence.
Leading UK sports doctor, Professor Mark Batt, from Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust and The University of Nottingham, said:
"The London 2012 Olympics will be a fantastic national spectacle and additionally will provide further support for the medical specialty of sport and exercise medicine. The announcement of £30 million funding for a National Centre of Excellence for Sport and Exercise medicine is a clear London 2012 legacy pledge, and continues the government?s support given to this emerging specialty.
"The East Midlands has a long heritage of sport and sporting success and is a natural home for the new National Centre. Along with London and Sheffield it will form a networked National Centre to serve the general public, patients and athletes alike. The East Midlands consortium provides a fantastic array of clinical and research skills and experience to support exciting developments at the new National Centre.
" The new National Centre will act as a focus for Sport and Exercise medicine research encouraging the development of pathways and partnerships for the translation of research findings into practice. Specifically, experts will aim to help people become more active and maintain these healthy life changes. Additionally the centre will provide medical services for those who become ill or injured through sport and physical activity, aiding a return to full fitness, work and sport.