Every day, bed bathing and assisted showering routines result in needless injuries for care providers and a loss of dignity for patients. This can be prevented by making simple changes to the procedure and better equipment. Together with ArjoHuntleigh, we've developed the Carevo shower trolley, which provides a safe and efficient working solution for care providers and offers comfort and dignity to patients in their hygiene care situation.
Over the last 50 years, ArjoHuntleigh has been improving the lives of residents, patients, and care providers in healthcare environments around the world. Hygiene routines, such as bathing and showering patients, are some of the most intimate and stressful tasks for a nurse. To improve the situation Veryday’s designers and human factors experts focused on the emotional user needs in the development of the Carevo Shower trolley. The goal was to set a new standard in dignified hygiene care. The design intention was to bring together mechanical design and functionality in harmonious overall shapes. To integrate functions in the overall design and to make users feel dignified, comfortable, and safe.
Work closer – reduce static load
The work began by identifying problems with existing height-adjustable shower trolleys. One thing they all had in common was that they provided very little access to the patient, making the care provider bend forward and increasing the weight of the lifter’s own torso, arms and head on their back, neck and shoulder area; the more the care provider bends forward the greater the static load. The muscles have to hold the position, which requires a great deal of muscle power and this rapidly increases the more the care provider bends forward. In order to reduce the static load occurring in assisted showering routines, the team came up with a whole range of improvements based on our medically related People Insight methods.
Firstly, Carevo has higher side supports and indented curves on the long sides, called The Ergo-Access Area. The “carving shaped” stretcher, in combination with the opening in the side support, allows the care provider to work close to the patient and in a better working position throughout the workflow, for example when turning the patient on their side. This reduces the static load on the care provider compared with the traditional square stretcher. Carevo also has patient handles that can improve log roll transfers, allowing the patient (if able) to pull themselves, facilitating the roll. This stimulates patient cooperation as well as reducing musculoskeletal load for the nurse. The head end of Carevo can be lifted – enabling hair washing or other activities in this area to be performed in a more ergonomic posture. The flexible soft part in the middle of the trolley mattress of Carevo (the comfort zone) is positioned where the patient is heaviest, which prevents them sliding down the trolley and makes rotating easier. According to a recent study in The Ergonomics Open Journal, showering immobile patients using Carevo helps to reduce dangerous static load for care providers by 13% and improves time spent in a safe posture by 10%.
Every feature of Carevo has been designed to provide a comfortable and dignified experience. The optimized design and flexible dimensions have reduced the number of different shower trolleys that would otherwise have been needed to provide efficient care.
Urban Orrell, Design & Ergonomics Manager, ArjoHuntleigh
The designers have also ensured that the integrated control panels and the built-in shower handle holders can be reached from all the main positions, which means that the care provider does not have to spend time looking for a manual control, and can instead spend more time and focus on the patient. The buttons have embossed symbols, making it possible to find the right button without looking at the panel.
When it comes to patient needs, the research carried out on traditional shower trolleys revealed that many patients felt they were in a vulnerable position. They even felt exposed and insecure. It has therefore been of great importance to increase the dignity of the patient. In order to do so, the team developed features that completely meet the needs of the patient. These include a thicker mattress with better pressure distribution properties for increased patient comfort. Elevated back support was developed not only to improve comfort for the patient, but also to make the patient feel more involved in the activity. It also enables better contact between care provider and patient and facilitates breathing for the patient. Other improvements intended purely to increase comfort include the flexi zone, which improves comfort when reclined by distributing the pressure placed on the body. It facilitates the safe positioning of the patient, since Flexi Zone reduces the risk of the patient sliding.
The comfort handle promotes participation and mobility, with the patient able to participate when being turned on their side, and gives an increased sense of security. The wider and softer pillow is more comfortable for the patient and their head won’t fall off the pillow when the patient is turned on their side. It’s truly rewarding to see that the unique design of Carevo increase quality of everyday life for care givers and patients alike. That’s how we turn every day into a Veryday!
The approachable appearance of the Carevo shower trolley is the expression of a concept that puts human needs at the centre of its design. It offers both patients and carers a high degree of safety. This shower trolley is easy to clean and pleasant to handle. Built-in switches, simple methods of adjustment and a shape that is adapted to its users make it possible for showers to be carried out gently.
Statement by the Red Dot jury