Over the last ten years, Francie (not her real name) had lost her ability to stand and transfer. She became totally dependent on staff for all her ADL’s, and gained a lot of weight. We gave up toileting because she refused to stand. Three or four people had to lift her onto the raised changing table and struggle to provide personal care. It was an ordeal.
Our program serves sixty-two adults with profound disabilities involving both cognitive and physical functioning. Many cannot bear their own weight and need to be lifted by at least two staff.
Being positioned onto the raised changing tables was an assault to their dignity, even when done with the utmost respect. Lifting these adult persons up onto padded tables was always a backbreaking ordeal, but the equipment we needed was not available.
The new Support Station is the solution to the problems we faced with transfers. It affords various degrees of support and assistance to make it suitable to use with all of our participants. It is obvious they feel secure using it. It also has allowed them to grow in the functional skills involved with standing and increased weight bearing.
The advantage of not having to lift the folks is huge to our staff. We have seen no injuries related to toileting since using the Support Station. We acquired four Blue Wave toileting systems, which we can roll over a toilet once the participant is comfortably seated. The time it takes for toileting our folks has been drastically reduced, it’s truly a 1-2-3 process.
The most impressive thing to see is the look of pride on each individual’s face as they reach goals. Many, many of our folks have benefited, but Francie has developed and changed most dramatically.
When we acquired the Support Station, Francie was the first person to try it, and with a lot of help, she was successful. So we used it with her on a regular basis. Now…it’s an amazing success story.
Each morning Francie comes into the Ladies room and gets herself out of the wheelchair, and stands independently using the Support Station. The only help staff offers is with clothing. Otherwise she takes care of herself. She is so happy. The look of pride and dignity on her face is a testimony of how important this is to her.
The benefits to Francie…her ability to stand, transfer and bear weight has improved drastically with the practice the Support Station provides her. Her skin integrity has improved. No more battles...and she is HAPPY and PROUD of herself.
Not to mention the staff benefits: elimination of physical injury and back-strain due to lifting, decreased fatigue and stress, and so much time saved.
We are extremely grateful that Rifton has developed the Support Station. This is a benefit that should be offered to all.