Equipment amnesty launched to rescue lost equipment
Volunteers and staff at Airedale Hospital have joined forces to declare an equipment amnesty in a bid to rescue lost wheelchairs, walking frames and other walking aids.
The last time the hospital held an amnesty hundreds of pairs of crutches, walking sticks, and walking aids worth around £4,000 plus several wheelchairs, were returned during the month long initiative.
The amnesty starts on 21 March and runs until 30 April and they would like people to return any equipment they have may still have but do not use – ‘no questions asked.’
Jo Sainty, Physiotherapy Manager at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“When wheelchairs or walking aids are no longer needed people sometimes forget to return them, or if something’s broken they worry about returning it. But we can often repair them or take serviceable parts to maintain others. “We are appealing to people to bring back any crutches, walking sticks and wheelchairs they no longer use, to help to ensure we have enough walking and mobility aids for future patients.”
Eileen Proud, President of the Friends of Airedale, said “Each wheelchair costs around £400 so even if just a few are returned it all adds up. It also means we don’t have to spend our resources replacing items that could be gathering dust in peoples’ homes.
“We want to reassure people that we aren’t worried about how long the walking aids have been kept for, which is why we hope that if people know they can return them without any comeback, they will hopefully be encouraged to do it.”
The charity has set up two areas at Airedale Hospital where people can drop off wheelchairs and other walking aids themselves – just inside the main entrance and in the outpatients department.
For people who do not have transport to take equipment back to Airedale Hospital, they can call the charity’s patient transport service on 01535 294626 and arrange for it to be collected.
Also any equipment that comes from Bradford and Airedale community equipment store or Medequip in North Yorkshire usually has a sticker on it – usually this is commodes, bedframes, toilet seats etc, if you ring the number on that item the company will come and pick it up directly from you.