Southwold hospital unveils new £7,000 bed for patients

WELCOME GIFT: Sister Sarah Boxer and charge nurse Wayne Butler receive the new £7,000 computer-operated bed from Harry Wilkins and Joan Hewitt, from the Friends of Southwold Hospital.

picture: SUPPLIED WELCOME GIFT: Sister Sarah Boxer and charge nurse Wayne Butler receive the new £7,000 computer-operated bed from Harry Wilkins and Joan Hewitt, from the Friends of Southwold Hospital. picture: SUPPLIED

Wednesday, March 26, 2014
8:53 AM

Southwold Community Hospital has unveiled a £7,000 computer-controlled bed for patients that is the first of its kind in the country.

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The bed has an alarm which is set off when elderly patients on it get close to the edge and it can rise silently at the push of button.

It also can be put in different positions for set lengths of time for treatment and an alarm will go off if the settings are changed inadvertently.

The low acute care bed also has built in weighing scales, programmable night lights and anti-bacterial rails and head and foot boards.

Currently being used by a dementia patient, the bed was given to the hospital by the League of Friends of Southwold Hospital.

The £7,000 Spirit Select bed was purchased from Montcalm International, which has supplied the bed in America and Canada and is now rolling its product out across Britain, with Southwold being the first place in the country to get one.

Harry Wilkins, treasurer of the league of friends, said: “We are able to buy equipment for the hospital that cannot be provided by the NHS.

“This is made possible by the generous donations of local people and organisations and we are pleased that we can repay the community in this way.”

East Coast Community Healthcare runs the 12-bed hospital in Field Stile Road.

Sarah Boxer, sister at the hospital, said: “We are really grateful to the league of friends for continuing to support us and giving us this amazing new bed.

“We look after very vulnerable, older people who need close and specialised nursing and this bed will keep our patients and staff safer.

“This is a really fantastic gift.”

Montcalm International is based in Abingdon in Oxfordshire and sells two types of hospital bed and accessories.

Crag Elwin, sales manager, said: “The bed is called Spirit Select and it is made in Canada and has been in use there and in North America for a few years now.

“It brings greater safety to the hospital ward, for patients and for the nursing staff and that means better care and a better working environment.”

Earlier this month a report from the Care Quality Commission praised the quality of care provided by the hospital after it had passed four key areas of an inspection carried out in January.

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