What You Need to Know About Bedroom Safety Equipment

We spend a significant portion of our lives in bed resting, sleeping, reading, watching TV, or recovering from an illness or surgery. Because our bedrooms, and beds, play such an important role in our lives at any age, there are a wide variety of safety and lifestyle aides available. Some of the most common ones are listed below.

Bed Accessories

·      Bed rails, bed sticks, and grab rails are important for providing support during transfers from a wheelchair to the bed and may also help prevent falls.

·      Ceiling poles, hoists, and care giver assisted standing devices all help those with stability concerns rise from bed safely.

·      Ceiling- or wall-mounted supports and rope ladder style devices help users hoist themselves into a new position on the bed. Other equipment that can be helpful in getting into a comfortable position includes bed blocks that are firm and easily gripped. They are placed over soft bedding to make movement easier. Also, for people with limited mobility in their legs, electrical leg lifts can be a great way to maintain independence.

·      Folding bed frames, also called mattress elevators, are ideal for people who want to sit up in bed to read or watch TV, but do not get enough support from pillows bunched behind them. The bed frame requires electricity to work and is raised or lowered with a pump.

·      A folding back rest is a cheaper alternative to the folding bed frame. It sits on top of the mattress and can be used with or without pillows. Unlike the mattress elevator, a folding back rest must be set up manually so are better for people with a higher level of mobility and independence.

·      Padded bumpers, when combined with bed rails ensure that the user cannot fall out of bed nor will they bruise or injure themselves if they roll into the rails. They also act as a barrier preventing arms or legs from becoming stuck between the bed rail and the mattress.

·      While the whole idea is to prevent a fall, adding a fall mat next to the bed will help cushion the blow in the event such an accident does occur. When combined with emergency alert devices such as alarms or call center connections, fall mats can be invaluable for helping prevent serious injury.

·      As we age, incontinence often becomes a problem. Items such as washable or disposable bed pads, and waterproof bedding help keep the mattress clean and decrease embarrassment.

·      Over bed tables are ideal for people who like to read, eat, or pursue a hobby while propped up in bed. The most common are bed trays which stand on the bed itself and have fold away legs. The other option is floor standing tables. Some of these are on wheels and can be easily moved away from the bed. If looking to purchase one of these, also consider things like height adjustment and a tilting top which will make it easy to move the table from the bedside to a favorite chair for use there. Also be aware of the clearance under your bed. Some bed frames sit very close to the floor and may not have enough space for a bed frame with castors.

 

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More information

Please note: VAT is removed in the checkout process

In the UK, disabled people do not have to pay VAT when buying certain disability aids and services (This can be claimed by friend or family member purchasing on their behalf). Not everything supplied to disabled people is necessarily zero-rated for VAT. Goods and services on which you do not have to pay VAT are usually known as 'zero-rated' or 'eligible for VAT relief.

Who is eligible for VAT relief?

You must be 'chronically sick or disabled' to qualify for VAT relief. The HMRC comment on this is as follows. A person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they either:

VAT Relief on our Disability Aids

All products on the Aids for Mobility website are flagged with an option to claim VAT relief during Checkout if it applies to that item. When you add a zero-rated product or service to your Basket, you will be asked to tick a checkbox to confirm that you, or the person for whom you are buying the item, are eligible for VAT Relief.

How VAT relief works

If you are claiming VAT Relief you will be asked to complete an extra few questions during Checkout, where we will ask you to provide brief details of your disability and confirmation that the product is for 'personal or domestic use'. We will keep a record of this declaration along with your order details. You can then buy the product(s) in your Basket at a price that excludes VAT. You will be asked to make this declaration each time you place an order that includes zero-rated products. It is a legal requirement that we record this information for every order, and we apologise for the inconvenience.

More information from HMRC

You can find out more about VAT Relief for disabled people on the HM Revenue and Customs website. If you cannot find the answer to your questions there or would prefer to speak to an adviser, you can call their Helpline on 0845 302 02 03.

The helpline is open from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday. (Closed weekends and bank holidays).