The search has been on to find a practical, tangible solution for bed falls management in the long term care sector. There is a strong drive within the industry to reduce the risk of fall injuries for patients and residents - to seek out every precaution possible through prevention first.
In a recent study, Dr. George Zaphir determined that the velocity of a fall is directly determined by the height of the bed from which the patient starts out at, meaning the impact is greater the higher the bed, resulting in potentially more significant and lasting injury. Evidence suggests a floor-level bed of less than four inches from the floor is optimum in reducing the risk of injury associated with a bed fall. (Source: Lowest Heights of Floor Level Beds: Fall Velocity and Impact Force Analysis and Resulting Injuries, Dr. George Zaphir).
Understandably, bed height, when looking at adjustable beds, is key in reducing the injury risk. Until recently, there seemed to be a drop off point where a bed could be lowered to, specifically around the 8-inch median mark, to what has become known as a low bed. They were intentionally designed with a lower height than other nursing or hospital beds, in an attempt to reduce the risk of injury from bed falls.
“The importance of taking every step necessary to prevent falls is impossible to overstate. Falls impact every aspect of care: from health outcomes, to financial burden, to provider safety and stress level. It is imperative to look beyond just client characteristics as the driving force behind falls. We MUST also utilize environmental/equipment solutions in a way that integrates naturally for our clients and care providers." – Emilia Bourland, OTR, ECHM
Low beds generally lower to between 7.5-9.5 inches. They tend to have a more limited lifting range, meaning caregivers may be at increased risk of injury themselves when delivering nursing care to residents. They do offer clinical contouring positions to reduce repositioning of patients or residents and some are capable of expandable sleep surfaces.
Conversely, with floor beds, which all lower to under four inches from the ground, residents are enabled to have a roll out of a bed, rather than a fall. The floor bed has been shown to reduce falls 100% (See the results of the Lutheran Home Case Study here). It also affords caregivers the option to adjust the range correctly to administer care above floor level. In addition, the floor bed offers BodyMove™ technology, unique to Accora, which shifts the pivot point back, removing patient shear. There is also a handset feature which can lock out to prevent inadvertent or misuse of the bed functions, providing further safety measures. Ultimately, the floor bed allows for more safeguarding solutions around falls as well as more inherent features that support patients and residents better.
The Accora FloorBed technology offers fall prevention solutions by lowering below four inches, which is the lowest on the market, and therefore reduces the risk of injury in the event of a fall.
We have developed our product by working closely with clinicians, administrators and caregivers, taking their feedback on how best to meet the needs of the residents and those administering care. With the primary concern of bed fall reduction and risk of injury, we have taken into account the need for making bed transfers more seamless too. FloorBed technology also reduces the requirement for bed rails, since fall height is lowered - meaning a decrease in the possibility of issues such as entrapment and resident agitation.
Simply put, Accora FloorBed technology can improve independence and mobility, all by increasing safety and ease of care.
Want to learn more? View our FloorBeds here.