Covid has totally changed the way that hospitals operate. Wards now have to be more flexible than ever before with the ability to adapt – sometimes in just a few hours - to the rapidly changing needs of patient demands
We have all got used to the idea of seeing beds moved around hospitals and now that trend has taken another major step forward with writing desks, storage cupboards and numerous other items of furniture – all of them set on wheels and ready to move at a moment’s notice.
According to specialist healthcare manufacturer David Bailey, it is now all about movement – where the beds go, the furniture follows – a growing trend which could in time change the way nurses and clinicians choose the type of furniture needed for wards and medical centres across the country.
It is not just a case of sticking a set of wheels on an existing product range. It’s all about innovative design, extreme hygiene and products that can take the every day wear and tear of a busy hospital environment.
It’s logical that furniture designed to move will be more liable to everyday stress and knocks – some more than others. Mobile writing desks as an example have their own particular challenge, offering a simple solution for nurses to move from bed to bed to take vital notes, while knowing that every movement offers the potential of an impact.
Movement is what it really is all about. The need for busy hospitals to manage bed availability creates problems particularly when capacity is reached. Wards need to be more flexible in terms of segregation whilst also ensuring adequate infection control.
Covid has demonstrated that NHS trusts are having to think on their feet to meet increasing patient demand, but they have proved that when the going gets tough, things can change very rapidly.
To increase medical capacity in London to treat Covid, NHS Nightingale was completed in only nine days, using the vast space of the ExCeL Centre. It is just one such example, but there are many similar success stories in other parts of the country.
So, what exactly does mobile hospital furniture look like? According to David Bailey it includes a versatile choice of bedside cabinets, wardrobes, storage units and writing desks, especially designed with movement in mind and ready to be wheeled into action to meet any emergency situation or day to day medical requirement.
The bedside cabinets offer easy access cupboards for mobile phones and wallets can be accessed by patients via inbuilt doors at the side of each unit, while the main cupboards have been traditionally kept at the front for larger items.
The cabinets together with the rest of the range have been made with a hospital environment in mind and are strong enough to meet the day-to-day challenges of moving beds and trolleys which frequently result in knocks and bumps. The units also meet the highest hygiene standards, but most importantly, they can be moved within seconds to any other part of the hospital or medical centre.
Being mobile also offers many other benefits in terms of branding and colour coordination. The temptation is of course to assume that everyone wants white, but that does not necessarily fit in with an NHS Logo – or with the different colour zones which are a feature of today’s modern hospitals.
If your mobile furniture belongs in the purple zone then why not have it manufactured to reflect that fact, maybe with the right logo incorporated into the design. It not only looks good but avoids the possibility of being lost in another part of the hospital.
Busy hospitals on the move need an infrastructure to move with them. Static storage units, reception areas, desks all have their place but when you are in the front line then you need everything else to move when you do – and that’s why mobile furniture could be the future for Britain’s hospitals.
For more information, please visit https://davidbaileyfurniture.co.uk/