THE Podiatry Department at Eastbourne District General Hospital has taken delivery of new wheelchair tilt and bariatric chairs thanks to a donation by the Friends of Eastbourne Hospital.

There is an increasing number of wheelchair and bariatric patients requiring treatment to their feet, some with complex wounds, who experience difficulties when they try to transfer to the treatment chair.

The new chairs allows a patient to be raised, lowered and tilted in complete safety in the comfort of their wheelchair.

This helps to reduce stress and affords maximum dignity to the patient; providing easy access for wheelchair bound patients and reduces any risk to the patient of transferring unsafely; along with reducing manual handling for the podiatrist.

The tilting bariatric podiatry chair allows the heaviest of patients to be positioned with greater comfort and in complete safety, whilst minimising manual handling for the podiatrist. 

For both types of chair there is no need for the use of lifts or hoists thus lessening the risk of injury from manual handling for staff and reducing stress and affording maximum dignity to the patient.

Elaine Tate Podiatry Clinical Lead said: “We are very grateful to the Friends of Eastbourne Hospital for this new equipment. It is going to be a brilliant and will enhance our patient experience by reducing the need for patient to transfer from their wheelchairs and be much safer for podiatrists too. This will also be amazing in the multidisciplinary diabetic foot clinic too.”

Hannah Perry, Lead Podiatrist for Intermediate Care Services said: “It is very exciting to have the first podiatry compact wheelchair recliner in the world with benefits to patients and podiatrists. Huge thanks to the Friends of Eastbourne Hospital who purchased this for us and to Design Specific for listening to our suggestions and making them a reality.”

Debbie Wicks from the Friends of Eastbourne Hospital said: “The Friends of Eastbourne Hospital are delighted to be able to donate this equipment to the podiatry department. My thanks, and that of the Friends of Eastbourne Hospital is to all those local people who make buying equipment like this possible through their donations to the Friends.”