Obstetrics & Gynaecology

Nottingham professor wins national charity 'thank you' award


Professor Lelia Duley (right) receiving her award from BLISS Chief Executive, Caroline Davey


Professor Lelia Duley of Nottingham University has been honoured by Bliss, the premature and sick baby charity, for her work to improve the early care given to babies born very prematurely (before 32 weeks gestation) and their families.

Professor Duley, who is Director of the Nottingham Clinical Trials Unit at the University of Nottingham, received the Bliss Advancing Care through Research award in a special ‘thank you’ ceremony held 14 July 2016 at the Stratford-Upon-Avon Home and Garden Show. A special, engraved glass memento commemorating her achievements was presented to her by Bliss Chief Executive Caroline Davey in front of an audience of specially invited guests. She was among award winners in nine different categories to be honoured for their outstanding contribution to Bliss’ work across the UK with babies born premature or sick and their families.

Professor Duley has led pioneering research looking at the early care for very premature babies, including pioneering care at birth for very premature babies being carried out beside the mother, as well as research to find out when is the most beneficial time to clamp the baby’s umbilical cord after premature birth. She and her team have worked in partnership with Bliss and the National Childbirth Trust (NCT) to ensure that the voices of babies and families were heard and put at the centre of this project. The main research findings are now due to be presented at a symposium on 1 November to be held at the Albert Hall Conference Centre in Nottingham. Bliss and the NCT have helped to plan the symposium, at which Bliss’ Head of Services Zoe Chivers, and a parent representative will be speaking.

Professor Lelia Duley said: “Research must address the needs of babies and their families.

Involvement of parents and families as partners is therefore essential if we are to do the best research. It has been a privilege and a pleasure to work with Bliss and the NCT, and a great honour to receive this award.” 

“I’m delighted to recognise the invaluable contribution that Professor Duley and her team have made in pioneering care for premature babies and ensuring their needs are at the heart of this research. At Bliss we are thrilled to have been able to work with Professor Duley on her research, and I am thrilled to celebrate her work with an award today,” said Caroline Davey, Chief Executive of Bliss.

At the ceremony, Professor Duley mingled with other award winners and other key Bliss supporters; enjoyed a cream tea and had exclusive VIP access to the Stratford-Upon-Avon Home and Garden Show. This was courtesy of show organisers Blooming Marvellous Events Ltd. As a family business, Blooming Marvellous Events Ltd have a very special reason for nominating Bliss as their chosen charity: their social media officer Joe Brookes is father to Stan, now four years old, who was born prematurely and Ezra, who was born full term on 21 July 2015 but who developed a hyperinsulinisum – a serious health problem.

Caroline Davey, Chief Executive of Bliss added: “We are so lucky to have so many wonderful supporters like Professor Duley: the support of each and every one of them is invaluable in helping us to achieve our ambition to reach every single baby born needing neonatal care in the UK and their family. It’s great to have the opportunity to highlight the achievements of some of them today.”

Notes to editors

Bliss, the premature and sick baby charity, champions the right for every baby born premature or sick to receive the best care. We achieve this by empowering families, influencing policy and practice, and enabling life-changing research. For more information about Bliss, visit bliss.org.uk

Contact: Deborah Hyde, Media Relations Officer: 0207 378 5741 or 07956 320 486, deborahh@bliss.org.uk

Posted on Thursday 14th July 2016

Obstetrics & Gynaecology

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