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Latest in hospital beds arrive at UHS

October 05, 2017

It was a monumental but well-planned and well-executed task. UHS has replaced all hospital beds at UHS Wilson Medical Center and UHS Binghamton General Hospital. The $5.2 million project equips patient rooms with 415 state-of-the-art beds designed to improve care and reduce falls. The project also includes 396 new over-bed tables, 20 critical care beds, 56 mental health beds, three bariatric beds and 40 new bassinets for the UHS Wilson nursery. UHS also bought 110 new recliners for patient rooms. All the equipment was purchased from Stryker, one of the world’s leading medical technology companies. “This purchase allows us to standardize products, improve staff satisfaction and increase patient satisfaction and safety,” said Gail Thalacker,vice president for Operations at UHS Hospitals. “The beds offer the latest technology that will prepare us for a more integrated patient care environment.

The beds feature specially designed side rails for patient safety and a StayPut frame that maintains the location of the patient when the head of the bed is raised, eliminating the need to re-position the side table for access to personal belongings. They also include iBed Awareness to electronically monitor the bed status and alert staff if pre-set statistics change, such as a shift in weight or position in the bed. The beds also offer touch-screen controls for all bed functions via an on-bed computer. The bariatric beds and mental health beds have specific product features designed for those patients’ needs. The new adjustable-height bassinets provide easier access to newborns for both parents and staff.

According to Thalacker, the equipment was chosen by a staff selection team following a series of vendor demonstrations and bed-evaluation periods. The Stryker equipment came out the winner based on the quality and features of the beds and the training and educational support offered by the company. Last spring Stryker beds were installed for a trial evaluation on South Tower 3 at UHS Wilson and in the Wilson ICU. Kristy Alfano, RN, director of Nursing, said during the trial period that South Tower 3 had a record-breaking 117 days without a bed-related fall. “The beds are a huge step toward improving patient safety,” she said. “But they are just a part of it. We have enhanced our fall prevention program by partnering with Stryker for staff education &training which has helped us reach this wonderful achievement of fewer falls during the trial period.” She added, “It has been a teamwork approach involving leadership and nursing and we are looking forward to even more good news about our fall prevention results now that all the beds are being delivered.”

The bed replacement project coincides with the Room Refresh program, a preventive maintenance program, being led by the UHS Engineering Department, to periodically inspect every room at UHS Wilson and UHS Binghamton General to make sure the rooms are in pristine condition. The Room Refresh team checks the function of monitors, call bells, telephones and televisions. At the initial inspection, each room gets a fresh coat of paint, new headboards and refinished floors.