New bariatric tilt table launched

Designers work with hospital staff to create tilt table for obese patients

Working in collaboration with the Colman NHS Hospital in Norwich, Plinth 2000 has developed a new bariatric tilt table that can support patients weighing up to 50 stone.

The table has been designed for use in the rehabilitation of the morbidly obese and has been totally re-engineered to meet safe working load (SWL) ratings for tilting as well as lifting through the use of synchronised twin motors and linear actuators, which include an intelligent service monitoring system.

The new Bariatric Tilt Table from Plinth 2000 can support patients weighing up to 50 stone

Colman Hospital, which incorporates the Colman Centre For Specialist Rehabilitation, has already taken delivery of the first table for use in its physiotherapy department.

Previously, nursing staff found that traditional models, while satisfying the SWL 50-stone rating for lifting users to working height, failed to do so for the tilting function, giving rise to serious concerns regarding safe patient handling. They worked with Plinth 2000 on the new solution.

The launch of the product comes as there is a reported 10-fold increase in the number of obese patients in the UK. This is putting pressure on hospitals to provide equipment that can safely handle higher loads. In its guidelines for bariatric patient pathways, the Health and Safety Executive notes that the manual handling of bariatric patients represents a specific challenge and it recommends stronger, more robust equipment to accommodate a range of bariatric shapes and sizes.

Niall Dyer, managing director of Plinth 2000, said: “Having already introduced a bariatric trolley, three-section couch and tilting podiatry chair to meet this market need, we were in the process of introducing an uprated tilt table when we were approached by Colman Hospital regarding the shortcomings of conventional tilting technology, prompting a total rethink on the design and mechanics.

“In consultation with electrical drive experts, we determined that electric motors are principally rated on their pushing, rather than pulling, action, whereas the geometry of a tilt table, especially when rotating the platform through to an 85° upright position, uses both push and pull motions. So achieving the SWL rating on the tilting function would require two motors and drives, operating in tandem throughout the rotation cycle.”

The new table incorporates OpenBus digital communication to provide a future-proof solution and a platform for logging in-service data.

“We valued Colman Hospital’s specialist input on this project and, with the help of its staff and our component suppliers, we have come up with a real breakthrough in tilt table testing and rehabilitation equipment for a patient sector where safety and reliability are obvious concerns,” said Dyer.