Provision of living aids could help NHS hospitals comply with part of the new Care Quality Commission framework on use of resources.
The new assessment framework specifically encourages, under clinical support services, “using technology in innovative ways to improve operational productivity”.
“So often, people are kept in hospital, taking up beds, because of problems sourcing care support at their home. That isn’t efficient or productive,” claims Robin Tuffley, Closomat marketing manager.
“Assistive technology- such as a toilet lifter or wash & dry toilet- that enables people to undertake basic tasks without carer support can thus facilitate timely discharge from hospital, by re-enabling people to regain their independence and reducing reliance on ongoing care. If support is required in the long term, provision of such technology is actually more cost-efficient too. It’s a win: win situation, that just requires a shift in approach from the accepted ‘norm’. Budgets are under so much pressure now we have to change our thinking, and not keep doing things in a certain way, by a certain route, just because that’s the way it’s always been done.”
Closomat’s theory is proven in practice. For example, former social worker Rose Murphy had surgery for a rotator cuff repair, and was being kept in hospital because homecare support couldn’t be organised. She already had a Closomat wash & dry toilet: once she explained how the technology would enable her to at least undertake her hygiene needs without help, she was allowed home, and didn’t require the same level of care support.