Kettering General Hospital has invested £750,000 replacing more than a quarter of its 610 beds with better and more modern beds and mattresses to improve patient comfort, care and safety.
The trust has bought 165 new fully adjustable electric beds and replaced 575 mattresses with a new form of hybrid mattress that reduces the risk of pressure tissue damage (pressure sores) for patients.
As part of the investment, the trust has also introduced a pioneering new way of storing its spare beds enabling three to be stored on top of one another in a special quick release cabinet.
The cabinet holds 27 beds that can be easily lowered and released by simply pushing buttons.
It also keeps all of the beds charged up (modern hospital beds run on batteries that are usually plugged into the mains on the ward) so they are ready for use and can be quickly employed wherever they are needed in busy times.
Clinical nurse specialist for procurement, Victoria Burger, said: “This is a fantastic development for the trust which means we now have up-to-date and fully adjustable modern beds for all of our patients.
“The new mattresses that we have bought are also a special hybrid type which means that we no longer have to transfer patients onto a specialist mattress if they appear to be in danger of developing a pressure area.
“The mattresses’ distribution of support can be adjusted to an individual patient’s weight and to address any concerns about pressure damage in a part of their body.
“These new mattresses are also specially made with removable parts so that if they develop a fault the faulty area can be repaired or replaced rather than having to buy a whole new mattress.”
In addition to the new beds, mattresses, and storage areas the trust has also introduced a new bed management system that helps us to keep better track of what beds they have and what they may need to replace.
It is estimated the new bed management system and new way of working with a bed store will save the trust an estimated £200,000 a year because it will not need to hire additional beds at busy times.