Blatchford is at the forefront in the area of Special Seating. We carry out comprehensive assessments involving all members of the patient’s team including their family, carers, therapists, rehabilitation engineers and seating clinician. This approach is focused on getting it “right first time” to enable the patient to get their seat as quickly as possible and to minimise wheelchair service waiting lists. Together the team works with the patient and their family to decide on the most appropriate outcome for the seating design. Important to our thinking is the concept of “See the person, not the chair.”
A Passion for Posture
Seating style and positioning decisions are made with the team present and the results take into account the day to day activities and lifestyle potentials for the individual. We ensure that the results give maximum opportunity for communication and interaction between the chair user, their environment and their friends.
Our seating solutions include moulded seating (MSI); carve foams, modular seats (KATO) and hybrid seats. A hybrid is designed to encapsulate different types of seating to best meet the user’s needs. It can include combinations of lynx/matrix, carve foam or moulded seats.
We are working on a number of design projects to develop new seating solutions that enhance seating comfort and positioning for specialist chair users. These designs take into account ease of car access and mobility within confined spaces so as to improve the lifestyle choices for patients and carers.
NHS Wheelchair Services
Following an initial referral from healthcare professionals we provide the following services:
Manual and powered wheelchairs
We assess, review and handover manual and powered wheelchairs and accessories for long term conditions. We have a range of wheelchairs to meet both the postural needs of the patients and the lifestyle needs of patients and carers. A thorough holistic assessment is carried out to determine the appropriate need for either a powered or manual wheelchair. At the point of delivery comprehensive training and advice is given on how to safely operate the wheelchair.
We provide specialist buggies for children with postural needs or children over three years of age who have mobility needs. We have a specialist children’s team to meet their needs. Within our centre specially designed children’s waiting rooms have been designed to make children’s experience as positive and enjoyable as we can.
Pressure relief cushions for mobility equipment.
We provide a speedy response to ensure that patients have the right cushion in order that pressure sores do not develop or to prevent the deterioration of sores. Advice regarding pressure relief management is given to patient, families and healthcare professionals.
Our staff triage referrals to either prevent an unnecessary appointment or to ensure they are booked into the right type of clinic.
For less complex requirements we can provide a “Chair in a day” where the patient is assessed and supplied with the chair at the same clinic appointment. At the wheelchair service we also aspire to getting it “Right first time” thus minimising any additional, unnecessary appointments.
There are duty clinicians available to answer clinical queries and concerns from patients, families and healthcare professionals.
Quality of care
We have a team of specialist clinicians including therapists, rehabilitation engineers, technicians and a team of administrators who are dedicated and committed to delivering a high quality and efficient service. Clinical governance is an integral part of our care and includes on-going service reviews, improvements coupled with audit research and training.
We actively encourage our patients to let us know their views in all levels of service development. Our virtual wheelchair group was cited by the Department of Health as best practice in 2010. We scope adults and children’s views using many forums with children participating in ‘one to one’ interviews and focus groups.