Tuesday, 18 September 2012

The Evolution of the Low Hospital Bed

The Evolution of the Low Hospital Bed
Today’s low hospital beds offer patients comfort and peace of mind, while providing a safe working environment for nurses and staff. But it wasn’t always this way…
The low bed movement sprang up in response to the increase in the number of patient falls from bed in various health care environments. Patients who fall from bed often experience a decreased quality of life as a result of injury and trauma. Treatment for injuries from patient falls can be lengthy and costly, and are often at the facility’s expense.
Long-term care facilities, the pioneers of the low bed movement, saw that the height of the bed itself was an important variable in patient falls. Patients often did not feel secure when sleeping and could not easily get in and out of beds that were too high, which resulted in falls from the bed. The lowest position of regular hospital beds and long-term care beds ranged from 18-22” in height, which was much higher than what a patient was used to at home. Elderly, confused, and medicated patients were much more likely to fall and get seriously injured at these heights.
The first solution to patient falls from bed was to place the mattress on the floor. Though the mattress did effectively reduce falls and patient injuries, mattresses on the floor raised concerns for infection control, staff safety, and quality of life for patients.
Recognizing that using a mattress on the floor was not a sustainable solution for patient falls, nursing home equipment manufacturers set out to create the low bed, and so began the low bed movement.
Years later, after the success of low beds in long-term care facilities, CHG Hospital Beds launched the world’s first low hospital bed.
The Evolution of the Low Hospital Bed

Nursing Home Beds
Fixed Low Height Bed (Echo)
·         The answer to long-term care facilities’ low bed needs
·         Replaced the mattress on the floor
·         The fixed height was still much too low for nurses to safely transfer patients

·         North America’s first electric low bed, introduced in 1997
·         Allowed fall-prone patients to rest at a safe height of 7.5”
·         Nurses and staff were able to raise the bed to a working height of up to 25” to reduce back strain
·         Only mobile at its lowest height, which still caused staff injuries

·         Replaced the Solo as North America’s lowest bed with a low height of 6.75” in 2000
·         Rose to as high as 33” and was built with staff safety in mind
·         Now mobile in any position
·         Introduced hospital-like advanced features to low beds, including Trendelenberg and footboard staff control panels
Hospital Beds

·         First low hospital bed, introduced in 2003
·         Offered all the same features as traditional hospital beds, but with the added benefit of a low height of 8.75” from the floor
·         Featured a 15-function staff control panel and a central braking and steering pedals for nurse safety
·         Ideal for patients at risk of falls
·         Can be used as a traditional bed in regular acute care patient rooms
Spirit Plus  
·         First med-surg low hospital bed, introduced in 2005
·         Features the same low height as the Spirit, at 8.75” low
·         Exceeds the features of traditional hospital beds with embedded anti-bacterial properties, auto-contour and chair positioning and more
·         Passes all FDA entrapment guidelines
Spirit Select

·         The most advanced med-surg low hospital bed on the market, launched in 2008
·         Height range from 10” to 35”
·         Offers the same features of the Spirit Plus and more
·         Features an integrated scale, Watchdog Monitoring System, and multi-zone bed-exit alarm
·         Central lock-and-steer system for safe patient handling

Low hospital beds have come a long way from the mattress on the floor. With a focus on patient and staff safety, low hospital beds will continue to innovate and evolve, forever changing the way health care facilities address falls

CHG Hospital Beds specializes in low hospital beds that are designed to prevent patient falls and related injuries within acute care environments. We are focused on patient and nurse safety and deliver innovative solutions to meet the needs of our customers.

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