Hi, I’m Lee Atterbury, your Servicing Co-ordinator here at Hcsuk. I work closely with our Field Service Engineer; Phil Cotton, who I’m sure a lot of you have come to know very well!
While Phil’s out and about giving your care equipment the TLC t it deserves, I’m your in house point of contact for all your servicing and maintenance requirements, and I plan and schedule in Phil’s workload and whereabouts on a day-to-day basis.
Phil and I work very well together as we have the same common trait, we both love people, and love to help people!
With this in mind, one question I get regularly asked is:
‘Should our profiling beds be serviced regularly, and is it a legal requirement?’
Whilst the servicing of profiling beds is not a legal requirement, care providers are responsible for adequately maintaining nursing and profiling beds to adhere to the provision and use of work equipment regulations 1998, aka PUWER.
PUWER has special status under the Health and Safety at Work Act, and the regulations require that equipment is:
- Suitable for the intended use
- Safe for use, maintained in a safe condition and inspected to ensure it is correctly installed and does not subsequently deteriorate
- Used only by people who have received adequate information, instruction, and training
- Accompanied by suitable health and safety measures, such as protective devices and controls. These will normally include guarding, emergency stop devices, adequate means of isolation from sources of energy, clearly visible markings and warning devices.
- Used in accordance with specific requirements
You can download our latest free guide to Essential Best Practice and Industry Requirements for the servicing and maintenance of your care equipment here for more information on your responsibilities under PUWER and LOLER.
Keeping your profiling beds well maintained also adheres to CQC Regulation 12: Safe Care and Treatment.
‘The intention of this regulation is to prevent people from receiving unsafe care and treatment and prevent avoidable harm or risk of harm.
Providers must make sure that the premises and any equipment used is safe and where applicable, available in sufficient quantities and must prevent and control the spread of infection at all times’.
Failure to meet this regulation or breach any part of the regulation can result in prosecution from the CQC and they will refuse registration if providers cannot satisfy that they can and will continue to comply with this regulation.
Profiling and nursing beds are predominantly used 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, so they need to be in good working condition for the family members and care staff, to ensure you are adhering to these important regulations.
Due to Covid19, there may be many profiling beds within the social care sector that haven’t been serviced or maintained for some time, due to the care providers duty of care to their family members, only allowing a bare minimum of essential maintenance during the national and regional lockdowns.
Care homes were closed to visitors and contractors in what was a really difficult period of time for all concerned, and as a result, routine, periodic service and inspections of profiling beds were not prioritised.
NB some care home customers opt to have their beds serviced annually, we recommend you refer to your profiling bed manufacturer’s guidance for specific and individual recommended frequency of periodic services.
I’m also now being asked ‘Is it safe for our family members to have their beds serviced now?’
Absolutely, and our customers are now having their profiling beds serviced again. Our engineer, Phil is fully vaccinated and will provide evidence on any visit to your premises as per the government guidance ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination of people working or deployed in care homes: operational guidance’, published 4th August 2021, and effective from 11th November 2021.
So, ‘How thorough are our inspections and what gets checked during our profile bed service?’
Practically every function plus all parts of a bed are checked as part of our service to ensure the bed is operating as well as it should be, and to ensure that family members and staff are safe to use it.
Phil performs the following checks:
- The bed ends, framework, base, and siderails for any obvious damage that might be a cause for concern.
- The brakes and castors are checked for any visible wear and tear that might affect the manoeuvrability of the bed.
- Phil also checks all the mechanics and electronic components, including the tilt, lifting, head, and foot mechanisms
- The motors and control box on the bed is also inspected for any visible damage.
- Finally, Phil inspects and tests the handset, transformer, and power lead for wear and tear.
Pretty much every component of the profiling bed will be checked during a service to ensure that the equipment is safe to use and still performing well.
Phil works in a safe, courteous, and conscientious manner at all times, and prides himself on the level of service and inspection he provides, with the safety and comfort of your family member at the forefront of his mind at all times.
But don’t just take our word for it, here’s what one of our happy customers had to say about PHIL:
“We’ve built a strong working relationship with HCSUK over many years, having used them to source, install and service our medical training equipment. We have always found the team very professional, helpful, and well-organised. We’d like to give a particular shout out to Phil, the technician/engineer who has been the consistent friendly face visiting our business to inspect and test our mobility hoists every 6 months. Thank you for all your support and advice.” Peter B (Care Manager)
My message to you is, if you have profiling beds that haven’t been serviced recently, or perhaps you would like your beds servicing for the first time, please get in touch, we can help you and it is now perfectly safe for us to look after your beds for you.
We’d love to hear from you.
For more information on how we could help you with a full servicing and maintenance package for your care home, you can download our free servicing guide: Creating Safer Environments in Care Homes here https://blog.hcsuk.co.uk/helping-you-to-create-safer-care-environments-guide