Gaming pioneer, Leonard ‘Len’ Ainsworth, will donate $1.25 million over the next five years to support the creation of the Ainsworth Chair of Technology and Innovation.
Managed by the Cerebral Palsy Alliance and the Grace Centre for Newborn Care, the Chair will focus on using advancing technology and innovation to accelerate the search for new and improved treatments and interventions for childhood disabilities and illnesses.
Professor Nadia Badawi, who is the Macquarie Group foundation chair of Cerebral Palsy and Grace Centre for Newborn Care medical director, said Ainsworth’s funding could change the landscape of children’s health.
‘We see critically ill babies and their families every day and we are committed to ensuring we are turning every stone in our efforts to find new and effective treatments and cures,” she said. “This position will inspire collaboration from the world’s best technological minds to produce innovative and ground-breaking medical interventions for children’s health and disability.
“Just how far new technology can take us is the new unknown, but it is an exciting unknown.”
Cerebral Palsy Alliance chief executive officer (CEO), Rob White, claims that while advances in technology have made significant breakthroughs in treatment, prevention and cure, the industry is only at the tip of the iceberg.
“We have children using computer generated speech devices that they control with their eyes to tell their parents they love them; we have critically ill newborns being medically cooled to enable their tiny damaged brains to repair themselves; and we have small babies undergoing intense early intervention therapy after being identified at high risk of cerebral palsy,” White said.
“All would have seemed impossible a decade ago; just imagine what can be achieved if we really focus our attention on using technology and innovation to produce better outcomes for these children and those suffering critical illness.”
The two managing parties are currently recruiting for the position of Ainsworth Chair of Technology and Innovation.