Patients to benefit from new state of the art surgical robot, thanks to £1.3 million donation

Patients at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals will benefit from a new state-of-the-art surgical robot, following the biggest ever donation to Sheffield Hospitals Charity.

Sheffield businessman and chairman of The A&S Leisure Group, Dave Allen, made the £1.3 million personal donation to enable more patients to benefit from a far less invasive form of surgery.

As many as 200 patients per year with prostate, kidney and bladder cancer will benefit from the robot which is one of the most advanced types in the world. Robotic surgery can often allow patients to return home earlier and allows major surgery to be carried out, but with smaller incisions.

The robot allows specially trained surgeons to perform delicate and complex surgery from a sophisticated robotic platform. The surgeon uses joysticks and foot pedals to work the robotic arms from a console, where they can use their eyes, hands and feet to control a 3D HD camera and specialised instruments attached to the arms.

The camera is ten times more accurate than the human eye and with specially designed ‘wristed’ instruments; the surgeon can perform complex surgery through small incisions with precision, as the machine adjusts itself to compensate for the natural tremor in the human hand.

The robot has been installed in the theatre complex at Sheffield’s Royal Hallamshire Hospital – with the first operation due to take place later this month (March 2019).

Patients across the region, including from Doncaster, Rotherham, Barnsley, Chesterfield and Sheffield are expected to be among the first to benefit from the new robot.

Professor of Urology, Jim Catto, at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust commented: “We are really quite overwhelmed with the personal generosity of Mr Allen. We currently have one surgical robot in Sheffield which is shared between four different specialties (Urology, Colorectal, Gynaecology and Head/Neck surgery). We run this robot every day, some evenings and many weekends. The second robot will mean we can offer this less invasive form of surgery to even more patients which is fantastic.”

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has one of the largest Urological Surgery units in the country undertaking more bladder and kidney surgery than any other NHS hospital and it is the fourth largest for prostate cancer.

Dave Allen, said: “It is a great pleasure to donate the funds for a surgical robot to the Trust. I was recently there attending an appointment and the Professor mentioned this new state-of-the-art robot that they were trying to raise funds for.

“He told me about the difference it would make to patients’ treatment and having just sold one of our businesses, he’d caught me on a good day and I decided I would purchase it for them.

“I’m so happy that the surgical robot will make a difference to the lives of people who live in the community. Having been successful in business, I feel proud that I can continue to make donations like this to local charities in our region.”

David Reynolds, Executive Director at Sheffield Hospitals Charity, said: “This is the largest single donation we have ever received and I’d like to personally thank Mr Allen for his incredibly kind donation. This extra robot will mean even more patients will benefit from this groundbreaking technology.

“His donation is an extremely welcome addition to the other amazing work we fund, thanks to the generosity all of our other local supporters.”

Kirsten Major, Chief Executive at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This is fantastic news for patients in South Yorkshire as we can now offer even more patients world-class robotic surgery to treat bowel and urological cancer so we are incredibly grateful to Mr Allen for this incredible gift. It really is a gift of life.”

To donate to Sheffield Hospitals Charity’s work to enhance the care of patients being treated at the city’s adult hospitals, visit www.sheffieldhospitalscharity.org.uk/donate

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