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Hoist slings

This section includes slings designed to be used with hoists to transport a person from one location to another. Some are designed to accommodate the size and weight of a heavier user, some can be made-to-measure. They are suitable for adults, children or both. Some slings are disposable.

Universal slings, or divided leg slings, are available with or without a commode aperture. Also included are hammock slings which provide good support and comfort for the user as the body weight is supported over a larger area of fabric, and band slings although care should be taken when using the latter due to the high risk of injury through inappropriate use, for example a user susceptible to spasm may be at risk of 'jack knifing' through the sling.

Toileting and access slings are useful for toileting and washing, however they do not provide adequate support for all users.

Standing slings provide support to a user who is using the hoist to stand.

Walking slings are mainly for use with overhead hoists to assist with walking and standing or dressing.

Slings for users with an amputation provide additional support.

Stretcher slings include both rigid and fabric models. Check whether they are X-ray translucent where this is a required feature.

Alternative slings and supports have unique design or function. Some are suitable for all day use.

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Ardoo Adult Bathing Sling
Bathing sling. Comprises: allows access to posterior for washing. Options: paediatric sizes come with waist band.
Ardoo Adult Standing Aid Sling Vest
Standing aid sling vest, designed to offer four different applications. Comprises: adjustable waist belt, loose strap for extra support; arm support.
Ardoo Child Bathing Sling
Bathing sling. Comprises: waist band; access to posterior for help with washing and bathing.
Ardoo Child Regular Sling
Child's split leg regular sling. Comprises: high back for support; padded legs; extra side strap. Options: easi on head support.
Ardoo Child Standing Aid Sling Vest
Child's standing aid sling vest. Comprises: designed to offer four different applications. Comprises: adjustable waist belt, loose strap for extra sup...
Ardoo Hygeenie Adult Toileting Sling
Toileting sling. Designed for arms to be positioned outside of the underarm bolster rolls. Comprises: Velcro waist band.
Ardoo Hygeenie Child Toileting Sling
Toileting sling. Comprises: Velcro waist band; designed for arms to be positioned outside of the underarm bolster rolls.
Ardoo Regular Universal Sling
Split leg regular sling. Comprises: high back for support; padded legs; extra side strap. Options: easi on head support.
Arjo Bariatric Hammock Slings
Bariatric hammock slings. Designed to be suitable for patients needing greater stomach support. Comprises: padded with a spacer fabric, designed to di...
Arjo Bariatric Slings
Repositioning sheet designed for bariatric use. Comprises: designed to aid the otherwise manual task of repositioning or turning user in bed; washable...
Arjo Bariatric Slings
Bariatric slings. Comprises: reinforced material and stitching; padded leg sections; fabric on the deluxe version is designed to disperse heat and moi...
Banana Clip Sling
Sling designed to be used with hoist. Comprises: padded support; head support; clip fastening design; positioning guides; wash warning indicator; colo...
Bliss Stand Aid Sling
Sling designed for use with standing aids. Comprises: polyester fabric; sling sits under arms; extra back length with stiffeners; slip-resistant back ...
Casa Fast Fit Slings
Sling designed for full body support. Comprises: additional support to sacral and thigh area; quilted material; positional loops for different seating...
Community Care Slings
Range of slings available in different models. Options: available unlined, half lined or fully lined; made from polyester or mesh; available in differ...
Community Care Toileting Patient Sling
Toileting patient sling. Comprises: made from ripstop material; colour coded for small, mediium and large.
Continental Rigid Low Convenience Sling
Sling designed to provide lower body support. Comprises: polyester or mesh material; semi rigid foam lining in the back and legs area; loop fixings; d...
Disposable Hoist Limbsling
Hoist disposable support sling. Comprises: non-woven material; colour coded strap loops.

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Buying equipment

There are several factors to consider when purchasing equipment.

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

Need More Help?

If you know that there is a certain product that will help you, feel free to browse through our online catalogue or use our search tool for specific product names. National retailers are listed against each product and you can click on their link to go directly to their website to order that product or contact the retailer for more information. Don't forget to tell them you found their information on our site.

If you are unsure about what you need why not try our AskSARA tool to narrow down your search by considering what areas of daily living you need help with.

If you would prefer to speak to someone for advice about daily living equipment, please contact our Helpline on 0300 999 0004.

Our experienced advisors will help you find the solution to your problem and can send you information on products that might help you, where you can buy equipment and other useful organisations that might be able to help you.

You can also post a question on the Youreable forum. it’s free to join the forum and the community is supportive and knowledgeable. The forum is an online community of and for disabled and older people and their families/carers.


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