10 March 2017
Independence increases for immobile patients at QMC
A new initiative is helping spinal injury patients to remain
independent and hydrated at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS
The spinal ward at QMC is one of the first in the East Midlands
to introduce the Hydrant, a piece of equipment that assists
patients to hydrate themselves - improving their recovery and
Spinal cord injuries can significantly reduce a patient's
mobility, as movement of the upper body is severely restricted or
non-existent. This can affect their fluid intake, which can cause
dehydration and other complications.
By using the Hydrant bottle's tube patients are able to suck up
fluids through the mouth piece that can be conveniently placed
close to them. This aids them in self-administering fluids, helping
them to feel more alert and self-sufficient.
The Hydrant bottles were secured for the ward thanks to a
donation from a patient's family and funds from Nottingham
Claire Hall and her family were inspired to raise money for the
bottles whilst Claire's mother Linda was receiving treatment on the
Claire said: "When mum was on the ward she didn't want to bother
the staff for a drink but due to having to lie down she wasn't able
to reach for her glass herself. The physio team suggested the
Hydrant water bottle and the difference it made to mum was
incredible. She was more alert and engaged, which helped her
"We wanted to make the donation of the bottles to the wards to
thank the staff for the amazing care they gave to mum and to help
future patients on the wards."
Michelle Emsley, who is physiotherapist on NUH's Spinal Unit,
said: "Some of our patients have lasting spinal injuries so being
able to hydrate themselves means they are gaining some independence
back when so much has been taken away. Their whole experience is
improved and they are better hydrated as a result.
"Being able to self-manage their fluid intake also improves the
mental wellbeing of the patient and they're more engaged in therapy
sessions. It might sound simple but it means so much and
makes a huge difference to their recovery."
The bottles are a welcome addition to the ward for Nutrition and
Hydration Week, 13-19 March. The national campaign highlights how
nutrition and hydration plays an important part in providing
quality care, experience and safety improvement in health and
social care settings. NUH will be undertaking a week of activities
to raise awareness of how food and drink is an essential component
to physical and mental well-being.