“Expectant parents cannot always know in advance of the birth that their child will have the condition, so the car seat they have likely bought in preparation of the new arrival will not be suitable, resulting in an extra cost to replace it.

“Our loan scheme will mean that parents and carers will not have to fork out for a new car seat and will benefit from a model – in the Opal HD – designed to provide extra comfort, support and ease-of-use to children with DDH.”

The Maxi-Cosi Opal HD, suitable from birth to 18kg, is age-perfect for children with hip dysplasia. With more space for the legs and support for the back, the car seat offers a child the best safety, even with - as is sometimes necessary for children with DDH - their legs spread wide.

It has a soft, padded seat for extra comfort, a support pillow for younger babies, a Side Protection System and five recline positions. It is easy to install with the car 3-point seat belt and can be used rearward-facing – which is the position recommended for optimum safety in young children up to 13kg - before being turned forward facing for use up to 18kg.

DDH is a problem with the way that the hip joint develops. It is usually present from birth and is more common in girls. When developmental dysplasia of the hip is diagnosed and treated early in a young baby, the outcome is usually excellent. If treatment is delayed, the treatment is more complex and with less chance of being successful.

Every year, more than 2000 families contact STEPS for help and guidance on how to deal with their child’s condition and how to cope with it.

Maxi-Cosi has long been at the forefront of car seat innovation, particularly in relation to car seat safety. It was influential in the development of the i-Size (ECE R129) car seat safety legislation introduced in 2013, and its 2wayPearl used with 2wayFix Base car seat was the first i-Size compatible car seat to be introduced to the UK market.