Leading Personalities Endorse Public Forum on Osteoarthritis

Saturday, 29 November 2008

The Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), NUI Galway has assembled a distinguished panel of speakers to partake in a free public forum meeting on the subject of Osteoarthritis. The 2008 REMEDI public forum entitled 'Osteoarthritis - current treatments and future therapies' will be held on Tuesday, 9 December, from 7:30pm in The G Hotel Conference Centre, Galway. Osteoarthritis is a major disease focus of the research effort at REMEDI. The annual public forum provides the public with an opportunity to participate in discussions on all sides of the intensive research effort to combat human diseases and to improve the lives of patients. Participating panel members are: Mr. Philip Gleeson, Arthritis Ireland – a patient battling early-onset arthritis. Dr Drew Burdon, Smith & Nephew, UK – a global medical technology company specialist who will highlight several new treatments for Osteoarthritis. Professor Frank Barry, REMEDI, NUI Galway – is an adult stem cell expert with a research focus on cellular therapy for Osteoarthritis. Mr. Bill Curtin, Galway University Hospital - an orthopaedic surgeon with significant international experience. The forum has also been endorsed by leading Irish sporting personalities Pat Spillane and Gary O'Toole. Spillane, the former Kerry GAA great, is currently suffering from severe Osteoarthritis. O'Toole, the former Irish Olympic swimmer is now a consultant orthopaedic surgeon in The Beacon Clinic, Dublin. Both have given extraordinary interviews about their respective experiences with Osteoarthritis and both interviews will be exclusively screened during the REMEDI forum. The forum is free and open to all members of the public. Further information can be obtained by contacting 091-495726, info@remedi.ie or by visiting www.remedi.ie. ENDS

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Minister Devins Presents Enterprise Ireland Awards to NUI Galway

Friday, 28 November 2008

Dr Jimmy Devins T.D., Minister for Science, Technology and Innovation, yesterday presented Enterprise Ireland's Industrial Technologies Commercialisation Awards. Two out of ten awards went to NUI Galway for its work in developing technologies in the fields of renewable energy and waste management. Since 2005, the Industrial Technologies Commercialisation Awards have recognised those researchers who successfully commercialised their research via a licence deal with an industrial partner or through the realisation of a successful spin-off. The award winners from NUI Galway were: Professor Gerard Hurley of the Electronic Engineering Department and Director of the Power Electronics Research Centre on campus. His project, in partnership with Convertec, is called 'Battery Condition Monitoring and Control'. Dr Michael Rodgers, a senior lecturer with the Department of Engineering, and researchers Edmond O'Reilly and Eoghan Clifford. The team licensed a technology to Bord na Móna called 'Horizontal-flow biofilm systems for small scale wastewater treatment'. NUI Galway has a strong reputation in technology transfer activities, as measured by license agreements, spin-out companies, new invention disclosures, patent applications, collaborative projects with industry and support to campus company formation. -ends-

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John Banville is Subject of Latest Book by NUI Galway Scholar

Friday, 28 November 2008

One of the major writers of contemporary Irish fiction, John Banville, is the subject of a new book by NUI Galway's Dr John Kenny. Entitled John Banville, the book is an accessible yet detailed study that brings to the surface many of the hidden depths of the Man-Booker Prize-winning novelist. With a close eye on chronology, the book begins by establishing the intellectual and cultural contexts of Banville's writing and its reception among readers. It then provides insights into Banville's Irish themes, his crucial theories of the imagination, his preoccupation with morality and immorality, and his idiosyncratic devotion to a self-reflexive art. The book touches on all of Banville's work, from his first book, Long Lankin (1970) to his Man-Booker winning novel, The Sea (2005), and his recent popular fiction written under the pseudonym Benjamin Black. A native of Glenamaddy, Co. Galway, Dr John Kenny lectures in the English Department at NUI Galway where he is Director of the new BA with Creative Writing. For Dr Kenny, Banville is a rich source of insight into creative writing: "For anyone who has read the words 'They departed, the gods, on the day of the strange tide' and then delved further into The Sea, they know the lyrical and emotive strength of Banville's writing". He added: "For this book, I have researched his literary archive and it is a model lesson in the creative process. In the multiple drafts of his novels we can see the way discipline and inventiveness are combined in one of Ireland's great exponents of the imagination. His work is testament to the powerful ways in which dedicated artists of the word can make created worlds come vividly alive on the page". Dr Kenny is also an Academic Director of the John McGahern International Seminar and Summer School and founding editor of The John McGahern Yearbook. He is currently working on a second book on Banville and on a study of Patrick McCabe's fiction. John Banville is published as part of a major new series on Irish writers from Irish Academic Press. -ends-

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Film about Asylum Seeker Wins Second Award for Students

Friday, 28 November 2008

NUI Galway students were among the winners at the 7th Media and Multicultural Awards (MAMA) yesterday. Richard Walsh and Julian Ulrichs, students of the M.A. in Production and Direction at the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, won an award for their short documentary 'F.G.M. - No Way Home'. Dealing with the issue of female genital mutilation, the film tells the story of Pamela Izevbekhai, a Nigerian woman currently seeking asylum with her daughters in Ireland. The MAMAs were established by the newspaper Metro Éireann, to recognise people, groups, companies, institutions and media platforms that promote diversity and multiculturalism in Ireland. In September, F.G.M. - No Way Home was also awarded the Best Short Documentary prize at the Radharc Awards. For their short film, producer Richard Walsh, from Ballybunion, County Kerry, and Director Julian Ulrichs, from Galway City, travelled to Nigeria to film footage for the documentary. The resulting piece is a hard-hitting yet sensitive exploration of the cultural and legal aspects surrounding the issue of female genital mutilation. The short documentary was based on a brief proposed by students of the M.A. in Public Advocacy, who collaborate with Production and Direction students every year to deliver incisive films addressing societal issues. Commenting on the most recent win, James Finlan, coordinator of the M.A. in Production and Direction said: "This was the first year we had students filming outside of Ireland, which was an exciting development. It's important to note the input from NUI Galway's Public Advocacy students Elisa Allen and Jayme Street, who came up with the initial brief on which the film was based. Winning the award vindicates the collaboration between the Production and Public Advocacy students, which is a unique aspect of these courses". Earlier this year, another Huston graduate Brian Deane won the Babelgum online film festival prize which was presented by Spike Lee at the Cannes Film Festival. Huston Screenwriting graduates have also won three out of four Stella Artois Pitching Awards at recent Galway Film Fleadhs. Huston School of Film & Digital Media runs a number of M.A. courses including Production/Direction, Screenwriting, Film Studies, Arts Policy, Digital Media and Public Advocacy. Further information available from: www.filmschool.ie -ends-

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New Communication Aid to Improve Access to Healthcare for Migrant Workers, Refug

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Pfizer Healthcare Ireland and NUI Galway, in collaboration with the Health Service Executive (HSE) have launched a Multilingual Project for General Practice settings, which includes a poster and a quick reference guide for GP staff. The aim of the Multilingual Project is to facilitate communication with patients with limited English proficiency (LEP), to provide a tool to overcome minor language barriers during consultations and to serve as a welcome poster in GP surgeries for patients coming from different ethnic backgrounds. To date, the Irish health sector has not had to address diversity in healthcare delivery on such a large scale or for such a wide variety of cultural groups. Research at the Department of General Practice, NUI Galway highlights that language differences between patients with LEP and their GPs are a serious barrier to health care access. The Multilingual Project contains words and phrases commonly used in a GP consultation. These are translated into ten languages that are frequently spoken in modern Ireland including English, Irish, French, Polish, Chinese (Mandarin), Lithuanian, Latvian, Portuguese, Arabic (Classic) and Russian. In light of a recent successful piloting of the Multilingual Project among GPs in Co Galway it will be distributed to all GPs in the Republic of Ireland. Dr Hans-Olaf Pieper, Fellow in Asylum Seeker and Refugee Healthcare, NUI Galway commented, "It is vital that all people living on the island of Ireland have access to healthcare. While this tool is not designed to replace the use of a professional, trained interpreter, it is intended to facilitate a path of communication between a GP and their patient. The display of the poster has the potential to indicate to patients with LEP that their doctor is aware of, and concerned about their language differences. The poster also has the potential to facilitate communication exchange between doctors and patients where there is a minor language barrier. Patients may have some English but may need help identifying medical terminology, specific body parts and so on." Ms Claire Murphy, Corporate Responsibility Programmes Manager, Pfizer Healthcare Ireland, stated "Currently, Ireland is a diverse society with migration named as the dominant factor responsible for the increase of Ireland's population. The development of the Pfizer Health Connect Project is timely as earlier this year the HSE National Intercultural Health Strategy identified information, language and communications as one of four main priorities and areas of development. As part of the Pfizer Health Connect Project we are launching today the Multilingual Project which addresses that need. People with LEP can now visit their GP with more confidence that they can overcome minor language barriers." Richard Broderick, Primary Care Manager, HSE West, remarked, "The Multilingual Project was developed and related research undertaken as part of the work of the Fellow in Asylum Seeker and Refugee Healthcare, NUI Galway. This post is a collaborative project between the Department of General Practice at NUI Galway, the Galway Refugee Support Group and the HSE West Primary Care Unit, which provides funding for the post. It is an inspiring achievement that in partnership between these organizations and Pfizer Healthcare Ireland this new communication aid is made available to all GPs in Ireland." Language diversity is a reality in modern Ireland and problems can arise when a communication breakdown occurs. This problem is felt especially in the General Practice setting whereby health barriers can exist due to a patient presenting with limited English. The new communication aid will hopefully assist in easing the challenging role of a General Practitioner and also facilitate a more worry free consultation for the patient. ENDS

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