Shropshire care home looks to reduce falls with fun project

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Joyce Wells, Olive Petty and Hannah Smith.

A Shropshire care home is anticipating a reduction in falls among its residents after starting a fun project to encourage them to ‘pimp’ their Zimmer frames.

 

Users at Coverage Care’s Woodcroft home in Market Drayton have been personalising their walking aids by spray painting them different colours including pink, orange, blue and purple or decorating them with stickers so they can easily identify their own frame.

 

Woodcroft provides residential care for older people and those with dementia as well as a community day centre and respite and short stay facilities. Zimmer frames are set to an individual’s height and selected for their particular mobility needs and use of the wrong aid can cause falls.

 

Home manager Kelly Lowry introduced the initiative to offer reassurance to residents that they were using the right frame.

 

She explained: “On one of our units we have a number of residents who sit close to one another and all had the same grey frame which obviously caused confusion so this seemed an ideal way to help them differentiate their frame from someone else’s.

 

Residents have had great fun decorating their frames and we’ve now got a rainbow of walking aids at Woodrcroft. The main aim is to reduce falls but, at the very least, it has given the residents something to smile about and they are no longer concerned about which frame is theirs.”

 

May Hubbert is one of the residents who has joined in. She said: “I think it’s a marvellous idea as I would get confused about which frame was mine because they all look the same and I would worry about falling if I had someone else’s frame. Now I always know which is mine.”

 

Coverage Care Chief Executive David Coull said other homes within the organisation were being encouraged to adopt the scheme.

 

The potential consequence of using someone else’s Zimmer, which is not appropriate for

the individual’s needs, can be very serious for an older person. If they fall, it can cause injuries and loss of mobility which impacts on health.

 

Residents at Woodcroft are already reaping the benefits and we hope to see pimped up Zimmer frames at all our homes eventually.”

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