Orthotics service at Alder HeyThe orthotics team provides devices for children and young people to be worn externally (orthoses) such as splints, insoles, spinal braces, Lycra garments and specialised footwear.

We work with Alder Hey patients and at special centres around the Merseyside area, and we take referrals from all over the country for specialist orthotics treatments.

We run outpatient clinics every weekday in our orthotics department, located on the Alder Hey campus, a short distance from the Emergency Department entrance to the main hospital.

Conditions we treat

Orthoses assist in the treatment and management of many conditions including:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Scoliosis Bracing, using the latest Digital technology.
  • Spina bifida
  • Limb reconstruction
  • Neuromuscular disorders
  • Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI)
  • Talipes (club foot)
  • Developmental dislocation of the hip
  • Foot disorders

We work closely with doctors, physiotherapists and other clinicians who believe a device could be fitted to assist their patient.

Contact us

If you are already a patient and you have any questions, please call us on 0151 252 5318 or email orthotics@alderhey.nhs.uk.

If you have an appointment you need to rearrange or cancel, please contact our Appointment Centre.

Further information

How to find us

Alder Hey campus map showing the location of Orthotics

The orthotics department is located on the Alder Hey campus, but in a separate building to the main hospital.

If you are visiting by car, please use the multi-storey car park entrance on East Prescot Road and then walk through the atrium past WH Smith to the hospital exit.

Entrance to the Orthotics service

Turn left at the exit and beyond the Emergency Department short stay car park you will see the orthotics building on your right hand side. It is a light coloured building with blue window frames and the entrance to Orthotics is at the back of the building, opposite the slope of the main hospital building.

What happens at an orthotics appointment?

Your child will see a specialised peadiatric orthotist who will assess them and advise on the most suitable device.

After the assessment we take measurements or casts to provide accurately fitting devices for each individual patient. We do keep a limited number of devices in stock, which can be fitted to patients immediately, but most orthoses (devices) need to be specially made so further fitting appointments will be necessary. Our expert technicians can do this on site.

Meet the team

Ian Spencer

"I’m a consultant orthotist and manage the orthotics service offered here at Alder Hey. I work closely with consultants and doctors in the hospital to make sure that the patients’ needs are met and am proud of the work the team do here in making sure that the children and young people we look after receive the best possible care.

One of the best parts of my job is seeing the difference our devices make for our patients, many of whom we see for many years as we adapt and make new devices as they grow and develop and their condition changes.

This is an exciting time for the department as we are now able to harness new technology. For example we can now take the 3D images of a patient’s spine provided by Alder Hey’s new EOS machine and use a digital application to design and create thinner and much more comfortable spinal jackets which can reduce the amount of surgery a patient needs."

Dave Simms

"As an othotist my job is to fit and supply patients with any devices that are worn on the outside of the body. This includes splints, helmets, footwear, braces – it really is top to toe. I make some of the devices here in an on-site workshop and adapt others so that they fit the individual’s needs as precisely as possible.

I love my job, I must do as I have been doing it for 53 years, starting here as an apprentice when I was 16, and have no desire to retire! It’s a great privilege to work with the children and to see them develop. I’ve treated so many people over the decades that I even bump into ex-patients when I'm on holiday!"

Steve McKenna

"As an othotist I assess, fit and repair the devices and appliances our patients need. The advantage of working as part of the hospital is that we get the opportunity to develop a good relationship with our patients and their families as we offer continual treatment. This is much better for our patients too as they get to know and trust us and become more comfortable with the treatments and processes they receive here.

Our new department is much better and more welcoming for our patients who often travel long distances to see us and provides us with plenty of space to assess our children and young people’s needs and make and adapt their devices."

Chris Parry

"As the department's administrator I’m the person you will probably speak to when you first phone the department. I’ve worked here for over 20 years and I’m the first port of call when people want to ask questions. I also liaise with the community centres we work at and our outpatients to make sure that our orders are met.

The best part of the job is seeing the patients when they come in and I’m proud to be working in a department that has such a good reputation."
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