St Helier Hospital is now home to a Changing Places room – a fully accessible bathroom with a height-adjustable changing bench, shower, hoist and enough space for a disabled person and up to two carers.
The Changing Places facility is essential for disabled people coming to St Helier Hospital for care. This might include people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, muscle-wasting conditions, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis and cerebral palsy, as well as people who have suffered major physical trauma, had a head injury or stroke as well as some older people.
Chief Nurse Arlene Wellman, said: “We are really proud to now have a Changing Places facility at St Helier. As a busy hospital, we want to welcome all patients and visitors and be able to offer vital facilities that meet their needs – whatever those needs may be.
“Because St Helier is such an old building, rooms tend to be small and space can be tight, making it hard for us to find enough room for this amazing facility. But we knew it had to be done - we heard the voices of our patients loud and clear, and so when our Phlebotomy Team moved into a newly refurbished area of Ferguson House, we carved out enough space in the designs to install a Changing Places facility.”
The Changing Places room provides a safe, spacious and comfortable environment for patients. It is fully equipped with a shower, electric hoist, full size height adjustable changing bench and sink, all of which ensure that patients with mobility and support needs have the same access to facilities that many people take for granted.
Trevor Fitzgerald, Director of Estates, Facilities and Capital Projects said: “We are really proud of our latest installation to help our patients and carers and have put plans in place for a second Changing Places room to be built at Epsom Hospital as soon as we can identify a suitable space. This is yet another example of our continuing commitment to upgrade our existing buildings ensuring equal access to for our patients.”
For more information about Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust, visit www.epsom-sthelier.nhs.uk.