Updated: Apr 2, 2019
Thorough planning and timely communication are very important to the successful management of bariatric admissions. Getting the patient on-site successfully may be the start of the treatment process — but before that there is a long list of considerations that need to be thought through to ensure the best quality of care for the patient.
How will the patient get to the care setting?
Are there any risks that need to be managed?
Are the ambulance service aware of the patient’s known or suspected weight/dimensions?
Is there an optimal entrance point to the hospital that should be used?
There are many situations that we normally take for granted in everyday life, which in the context of Bariatric Care might pose a problem. For example those outlined in the NHS Grampian Bariatric Protocol:
— Avoiding slopes;
— Uneven flooring;
— Damaged pavements/walkways;
— Reducing distance to final destination;
— Time of day for admission – busy corridors, staff availability;
— Size of doors;
— Condition of any elevators to be used;
— Their Safe Working Load must not be exceeded;
— Sufficient width/height for access to elevator;
— Size of gaps potentially allowing trapping of equipment castors, etc.;
— Patient’s ability – can they walk to the ward?;
— Will they be transferred from the entrance on a wheelchair/trolley?;
— How many staff will be required?;
— Are these ward staff or porters or ambulance staff?;
— Again, is the equipment appropriate for the patient? (Safe Working Load/dimensions).
As experienced providers of Bariatric Care, iON Ambulance are well versed in many situations and provide an adaptable service. On-going training of our staff members is not only for the purpose of keeping them up to date with guidelines and best practises but also to prepare them for any, and every eventuality.
In order to consistently provide the highest level of care possible, iON Ambulance uses a variety of safe-guarding procedures and checklists (much like the procedures used by pilots on commercial flight navigation) to make sure every patient is transported safely and with dignity.