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Profiling domestic beds

This section includes profiling beds that, because of their size and appearance, may be considered more appropriate for use in a domestic setting. Some beds are designed to accommodate the size and weight of a heavier user, some can be made-to-measure.

Profiling beds have a sectioned mattress platform, the sections of which can be adjusted in position to suit the needs of the individual – this may include raising the back section to form a backrest or the lower sections to raise the legs. They can be adjusted manually or electrically to change the shape or profile of the bed. By profiling the bed into a sitting position, and by pulling on a strategically positioned grab rail or lifting pole, people may be able to take some of their body weight in order to raise themselves several centimetres from the bed, helping them to manoeuvre their bottom to the edge of the bed from where it may be easier to stand up. These beds may be fixed or adjustable in height. Some adjustable height beds enable the user to select the most appropriate height for transfers, and carers to select the most appropriate height for assisting the user.

Dual operated profiling beds have electrically adjustable functions on one or both sides of the bed. They are made up of two single beds which can be either enclosed in a shared surround, or separable to allow carer access. These beds can address the issue of couples who have different needs, but who wish to share a bed.

Low level profiling beds have a mattress platform height of below 25cm. They are electrically profiling, and some are height adjustable to enable the bed to be positioned at heights appropriate for transfers, sleeping and for any care givers providing assistance.

Assisted entry/exit beds transform from a fully flat bed and rotate 90 degrees while raising to an upright seated position to assist users with getting in and out of bed. The rotation may be manual or electrically controlled via a hand control.

Soft/safe spaces are designed for children or adults who self-injure, whose behaviour is unpredictable, or who are otherwise at risk of injuring themselves (for example a child or adult with epilepsy) when sleeping in a bed or cot. Soft spaces may be made up of four foam-filled padded sides that sit within the bedroom, or alternatively the walls of the bedroom can be padded.

Soft sided beds do not have any hard sides and so reduce the risk of injury.

Children’s profiling beds may also include drop down or detachable safety sides, and increased durability for withstanding challenging environments.

3-4 Pod Sleep Space
Soft sided sleep area with low stimulation. Comprises: padded floor; integral plinth, adjustable in height; tensioned sides; no removable parts or are...
Abberley Home Care Profiling And Lifting Bed
Bed with four part frame and separate lift and profile function, can be adjusted by either the carer or patient. Comprises: deep base divan; cabled ha...
Abberley Lifestyle Adjustable Bed
Adjustable bed. Comprises: memory foam mattress. Options: choice of headboard sizes; handset and mattress upgrade; pillows and fitted sheets; mattress...
Abberley Premier Adjustable Beds
Adjustable electric bed. Made to order for height and weight. Comprises: divan base; memory foam mattress up to 95kg; handset. Options: range of uphol...
Abbeyglen Adjustable Bed
Profiling bed with mahogany frame. Comprises: electric adjustable profiling; mahogany frame. Options: heavy duty frame; adjustable height; range of ma...
Adjustable Bed With High Low Action
Adjustable height profiling bed. Comprises: high/low action allows for person to be turned in bed at comfortable height; assists standing from seated ...
Alerta Encore Low Hospital Bed
Bariatric electric profiling bed. Comprises: braking castors; low bed in four sections; knee brake adjustment; transport system for moving and storin...
Alerta Encore Standard Single Profiling Bed
Profiling bed suitable for domestic use. Comprises: adjustable height metal frame that dismantles for storage and transportation; four braked castors;...
Allura II Bariatric Profiling Bed
Variable posture profiling bed for bariatric use. Comprises: powder coated steel frame; four braked castors; four-section mattress platform; powered h...
Alrick Ultra Low Floor Level Bed
Ultra low floor level bed. Comprises: removable head and foot boards; no end columns; chair positioning; handset with one touch button functions; side...
Alveston Adjustable Bed
Profiling divan bed available in a range of sizes. Comprises: profiling back and knee break; mattress; handset. Options: available in a range of sizes...
Ancroft Adjustable Profiling Bed
Domestic bed. Comprises: wheeled divan base; mattress; mattress stop; handset controller for variable posture control; sprung wooden slatted mattress ...
Aphrodite Nursing Bed
Nursing bed. Comprises: individually lockable castors; electronically operated backrest, height, tilt and knee break; detachable side rails; auto-cont...
Apollo Ares Nursing Bed
Nursing bed. Comprises: lockable castors; low bed; detachable side rails; head and foot panel; handset; electronically operated backrest, height, tilt...
Apollo Bariatric Professional Nursing Bed
Bariatric nursing bed. Comprises: head and foot panels; individually lockable twin castors; bed rails; electronically operated backrest, height, tilt ...
Apollo Super Low Single Panel Nursing Bed
Profiling bed with low mattress platform height. Comprises: adjustable height metal frame; four lockable castors; four-section metal mattress platform...
Arctic Turning Bed
Variable posture bed with lateral tilt facility which can enable user to turn and sit simultaneously. Comprises: castor base; metal frame; sectioned m...
Ashford Adjustable Bed
Adjustable profiling bed available in a range of sizes. Comprises: upholstery made from eco leather; mattress; handset. Options: available in a range ...
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Buying equipment

There are several factors to consider when purchasing equipment.

Making complaints and reporting unsafe products

In most instances a complaint should initially be made to the supplier who provided you with the item. CAB has a range of guidelines on their website on making a complaint about poor service or faulty goods. These include complaining by phone, complaining in writing and template letters. CAB advice about making a complaint.
If you are not satisfied with the supplier's response then you may choose to complain to:

  • an ombudsman scheme
  • a regulator
  • an independent mediator
  • a trade association (if the supplier is a member of one)

 

Safety incidents involving medical devices can be reported to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on the GOV UK website www.mhra.gov.uk or their Adverse incident centre hotline 020 3080 7080. The MHRA is the government agency responsible for ensuring that medical devices and medicines work and are acceptably safe. Their definition of 'Medical devices' includes devices used for assisting patients and users, thus many daily living aids such as bath lifts, commodes and walking sticks are medical devices. Any incident involving the safety of a medical device (including safety issues with its instructions for use) should be reported to the MHRA, especially if the incident contributed to, or could have caused injury, life-threatening illness or death.

Buying from a private person

Buying from a private person gives you fewer rights. You will only be able to claim against the seller if the product doesn't match its description or if the seller did not own it. Consequently, some firms occasionally pretend to be private sellers to avoid their legal responsibilities towards customers. If you suspect this has happened to you find out about your rights and what action to take on the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) website https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/ or call 0345 404 0506 to speak to the Citizen Advice consumer helpline.

Guarantee

The length of the manufacturer's guarantee does not limit any claim you may make to the seller as if a product develops a fault outside the guarantee period you can still claim against the seller if you can show that the fault was unreasonable at that period in the products life.

 

You may be asked whether you would like to purchase an extended warranty. Remember that your statutory rights exist, under the Sale of Goods Act, whether or not you choose to buy their warranty and whether or not the goods came with any guarantee. Manufacturers' guarantees are separate from the automatic rights you have against the seller, and may be more limited. For more information read the Citizens Advice Bureau guide to guarantees and warranties.

Maintenance and insurance

For large complex items, such as a stairlift, check what kind of maintenance contract the supplier offers.

Membership of trade associations

Some suppliers are members of a trade association. Many of these trade associations have a code of practice that governs their members' customer service, and thus may help to project you from unscrupulous selling practices. For example, some trade associations prohibit their members from contacting people uninvited to try and sell their products. They may also prohibit their members from using high pressure selling tactics such as offering a discount if you order that day, or phoning their manager while demonstrating the equipment to you to agree a 'special discount/deal'. Thus if you have a choice of suppliers for the product you wish to purchase we recommend you consider the suppliers who are members of trade association.

We record suppliers' membership of several trade associations (see a list of these trade associations) and our ratings give greater weighting to trade associations with codes of practice which are approved by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) (e.g. the British Healthcare Trade Association) or governed by an audit scheme which meets the requirements of the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

We also record whether suppliers meet the ISO 9000 series of standards. These standards define a Quality System which certifies that formalised business processes are being applied, and thus may be another indicator to look for if you have a choice of suppliers.

VAT

You may be able to purchase equipment designed for use by disabled people without paying the VAT if you are 'chronically sick or disabled', and you are buying the item/s for your own personal or domestic use. For VAT purposes, a person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they:

  • Have a physical or mental impairment which has a long-term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out everyday activities.
  • Have a condition that the medical profession treats as a chronic sickness (e.g. diabetes).
  • Are terminally ill.

 

So, you won't qualify if you're only temporarily disabled or incapacitated (e.g. if you have a broken leg).

Examples of products which are likely to qualify for VAT relief (if intended for the personal or domestic use of a chronically sick or disabled person) include:

 

  • wheelchairs
  • stairlifts
  • computer software or hardware designed specifically for disabled individuals
  • kettle tippers, tap turners, button hooks and similar gadgets or devices that are designed solely to make everyday tasks easier for disabled individuals
  • artificial limbs
  • vehicles that have been adapted for use by a wheelchair or stretcher user

Price

Price is important but, if we list more than one supplier, it is important to look for more than just the cheapest price. Check when the prices were last updated (this should be stated under each price). Consider whether:

  • Postage/delivery is included (if shopping by mail order or online)
  • Is the supplier a member of a trade association? (see below)
  • Is one supplier listing the price with VAT and another without VAT?
  • Check the suppliers' returns policies and any guarantees / warranties (see below).
  • For complex equipment that requires maintenance and/or servicing check what's included in the price and what the ongoing costs will be.

Get advice and an assessment

Experienced therapists or trusted assessors know a lot about products and will help you make sure the product is right for you now and will continue to be suitable in the future. 

 

You may be able to get an assessment and advice from social services. GOV.UK website
Alternatively you may choose to pay for a private occupational therapist. If you wish to request a private appointment with an occupational therapist then you can obtain details of local private occupational therapists from the 'College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section - Independent Practice' (COTSS-IP) website. www.cotss-ip.org.uk or phone their enquiry Line: 0845 129 7699.
You can check whether a therapist is state registered with the Health Care professions Council (HCPC) at www.hcpc-uk.org/audiences/

Try before you buy

You can find out about products and try them out, with independent advice at an Independent Living Centre (ILC). There are about 30 ILCs in the UK. Most do not sell products but they will be able to tell you where to buy them. We recommend you make an appointment before you visit

You could view equipment at an exhibition. They are a good opportunity to see what's available and meet the competing suppliers. The main exhibition of equipment is NAIDEX, held annually at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham, and Glasgow. www.naidex.co.uk


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