24 July 2012

New wheelchairs to benefit patients

New wheelchairs to benefit patients

Hundreds of new and improved wheelchairs are being rolled out across Nottingham's hospitals in response to visitor and patient feedback.

In addition to increasing accessibility at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, the chairs are more comfortable and easier to use.

The chairs feature drip hooks and a large back pocket to carry patient notes improving their practicality.

The Trust is also making £1 coin-operated wheelchairs available at main hospital entrances. The system, similar to that used for supermarket trolleys, will encourage people to return chairs to get their money back.

All the chairs feature prominent metal lollipops with the NUH/NHS logo integrated into the design to discourage the new chairs being wheeled into private cars and ambulances. 

The chairs have also been marked with SmartWater and carry a unique serial number to dissuade theft and enable people to return any chairs if found discarded.

Costing £30,000, the new chairs and associated improvements are being led by NUH's Wheelchair Strategy Group.

Clive Young, Head of Logistics at NUH, said: "We are fully committed to improving patient experience when visiting our hospitals. Customer feedback from those who have used the new wheelchairs has been very positive.

"We have been working with local companies to design wheelchairs that are excellent quality, low maintenance, cost-effective and environmentally friendly.

"I believe we have achieved this because every moving part of our chair can be replaced quickly and effectively by a local company within 24 hours, hence reducing our carbon footprint.

"We have a three-year customer care package with our supplier which will increase the shelf-life of the chair considerably."

NHS Nottingham University Hospitals
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