IL Newsletter, 9th February


Hello and welcome to the latest Independent Living newsletter.

Contents:

1. Social Care and Health
2. Nutrition and Dietitians!
3. Moving & Handling People
4. InstructAbility
5. Update on Showcase Pages
6. Late News Snippets

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1. Social Care and Health

You don't have to be very politically aware in order to be conscious of an upsurge in news coverage about social care, as the government considers options for reform of the current system, and the Health Select Committee delivers a report condemning the treatment of frail elderly people, who are described as "passed like parcels" from one agency to another, as budgets are cut and health, housing and social care authorities fail to collaborate. If a society is judged by the way it takes care of the most vulnerable, we don't have much to be proud of at the moment.



Is it too late to make some changes? It seems to me that, if the government was willing to put the energy behind reform of social care that they are lavishing on widely unwelcome changes to the NHS, they could achieve a great deal. It is entirely obvious to the most casual observer that the arbitrary way in which services are divided between health needs and social needs is causing unnecessary work and expense for the agencies involved, who frequently duplicate each others' activities rather than sharing knowledge to the benefit of their clients. People's health deteriorates while multiple assessments of their needs are undertaken, leaving said assessments redundant and the hapless recipient of these attentions perhaps needing to be admitted to hospital, which would have been quite unnecessary if a little support could have been provided earlier on.



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2. Nutrition and Dietitians!


Providing more information about topics that site visitors are interested in is our chief concern here at Independent Living, so I am very pleased that Mary Farmer, former NHS dietitian, has joined our regular contributors with her "Nutrition Blogspot", a look at the role of nutrition in health; the work of dieticians; diet and obesity; malnutrition; superfoods... Over the coming months, we can look forward to a fascinating series of articles, and the first one is now online, explaining in her inimitable style just what it is that dietitians do!



As always, we'd love to have your feedback, and if there are any nutrition-related topics you'd like to know more about, just let me know in any of the usual ways - email editor@independentliving.co.uk, visit our Facebook page, or send us a tweet @IndLiving



Our Eating Well section is part of the Community area of Independent Living dedicated to carers - and you will find all sorts of information there to help with keeping fit and well.



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3. Moving & Handling People

Last time, I promised a look at some new developments in moving and handling people, a subject I know from our postbag is of great interest to many site visitors.



Starting with a development that is perhaps rather "low-tech", a neat extension of the classic walking frame and rollator. LiftWalker and LiftRollator take the familiar mobility aids and add two retractable poles at the front, which function as grab bars, enabling many people to rise from sitting unaided. You can see more in the IL Newscentre.



Scandinavian lifting specialists Ergolet has a new compact bariatric range which comprises the Titan 250, a stand aid with a 250kg (40st) SWL, Atlas 250 and Atlas 300 full body sling hoists with 250kg (40st) and 300kg (47st) SWL respectively. Bariatric clients can be hoisted easily, but transferring from bed to chair is difficult and can be dangerous. So an optional power drive is available which will assist with transfers. This is a clip on/off unit which can be transferred between hoists in seconds. There is a choice of spreader bars with two, three and four point options to suit the client's needs.



There will be more about the latest in patient hoisting and transfers in the next newsletter, and meanwhile, you can visit the IL Moving and Handling area by following this link.


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4. InstructAbility

The imminent arrival (well fairly imminent - I don't want to wish the year away too quickly) of the 2012 Olympics is concentrating minds on sport. Even those people who are not of a particularly sporty nature. So I was interested to hear about an opportunity to train as a fitness instructor, for free. As part of a programme designed to improve employment opportunities in the fitness industry for people with disabilities, Aspire - the spinal injury charity - together with YMCAfit, is organising the course in London, starting later this month.



If it sounds like your sort of thing, you are disabled and unemployed and live in London, you can book a place on selection day (15 February) by phone, 07917 822977, or email hilary.farmiloe@aspire.org.uk


There is more information about fitness and sport, whatever your level of ability in the IL Fitness and Exercise section.

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5. Update on Showcase Pages

Ezy-As is the name to remember when confronted with compression hosiery. Effective for managing problems such as varicose veins, lymphoedema and chronic venous insufficiency, as well as helping to prevent blood clots in the leg, they can be very difficult to apply, either to yourself or when helping somebody else. The Ezy-As applicator makes it a much easier procedure, and as it doesn't touch the skin, it eliminates the risk of worsening the injury being treated, or nicking a varicose vein, with disastrous results. You can see more on the Ezy-As ABC showcase page



Height Adjustable Desks are well known for their ergonomic workplace solutions, but did you know that they also provide cost-effective height adjustable frames for use in the kitchen, to support sinks and hob tops? See more on their showcase page.



EPC Wheelchairs' new page reflects their range of manual and powered chairs, as well as power add-ons which convert a manual chair to a powered one. Power packs either sit behind the chair, or in the hubs of the rear wheels.



Drive Medical's showcase page now includes the new Sport Rider Scooter, a mobility scooter that gives more than a nod to motorbike design. The three-wheeler has good all-round suspension, an 8 mph maximum speed, and is suitable for riders up to 28 stone (180 kg).



Oxford Hoists manufacturer, Joerns Healthcare, includes their ergonomically designed and electronically operated Calibre bariatric lift, which can transfer people weighing up to 60 stone (386 kg) in a range of different situations.



And for one of the lightest transit chairs on the market, Karma Mobility's Ergo Lite has been streamlined in all its elements, while including a double cross brace to make sure that it is also sturdy. See more about this and other innovative chairs, both manual and powered, on Karma's new showcase page.



All suppliers' showcase pages are accessible by clicking the links on the right of the relevant editorial sections. Here are links to the Independent Living Aids centre and the Care Professionals Product area



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6. Late News Snippets

Kidz in the Middle is coming up next month. Parents and carers of children with disabilities can view equipment and products at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry on 29 March. It is often a headache sourcing funds for much-needed equipment, so "The Funding Point" could be a useful stop, with its advice on alternative funding streams. Tickets are free from Disabled Living on 0161 607 8200 or email info@disabledliving.co.uk



An interesting pilot scheme in Wiltshire is providing telecare support to hundreds of people who would otherwise not be able to continue living independently at home. A joint venture between the council and the NHS (which goes to show that collaboration is possible!) the scheme includes medication management, bed and door sensors to detect unusual movement, even portable GPS devices to help find the person if they do wander off. You can read more about telecare monitoring services in the IL telecare section

And that's it for now! I hope you've found our latest newsletter interesting. Don't forget you can access all the news as soon as it is uploaded in our News Centre

Or you can subscribe to our RSS newsfeed:

Independent Living Newsfeed

Our Facebook page is regularly updated with the latest developments on the site, and is also somewhere that you can share your opinions with us. Or if you want to make it pithy, send us a tweet! @IndLiving

Until next time, all good wishes,

Frances

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Comments

An interesting comment from somebody with long experience working as an OT:

Sticking with social care/NHS, we had a system 5 years ago where we generated common assessments used by OT/ social workers and DNs. We swapped completed assessments to save duplicating asking questions.

It started off well then slowly managers changed and DNs were moved from GP surgeries so they lost some contact with GPs and ended up in some rubbish building with no parking for visitors, so we lost this interchange. We had some respiratory nurses in our offices - they left.

Then the Government decided that everything social care should be 'personalised' so in came self-directed support assessments for social workers, and all the questions covered in the common assessment were lost.

So we had close working and now it's all gone, and guess what - the politicos want us to work together until the next high tide!

Different countries have different questions of violations of human rights and needs of the various legal documents and procedures to correct problems and violations of them. Many people are confused to understand the violations of fundamental individual rights and how to declare the law. Being a student of a university degree in Human Rights , have attempted to summarize what are human rights?