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Fall Prevention: Learn how we deliver the best solutions to hospitals and homes

Tunstall Emergency Response was founded in Co. Wexford in 1994 and since its inception has consistently delivered the best in products and services to Irish Medical Facilities and Irish families. We have over 20 years’ expertise in delivering Fall Prevention solutions in Ireland.

In our heading we promised to tell you all about the best fall prevention practices. As most clinical physicists, occupational therapists or public health nurses will tell you, technology cannot fully prevent a fall. However, what it can do is alert you once the circumstances conducive to a fall have taken place.

We help create environments of immediate fall detection. This allows you to limit the personal injury to someone who has suffered a fall.

Most of our clients engage our expertise after the fact, meaning a person has suffered a fall. They have decided that now time to put measures into place to optimise the safety of an individual.

This week we sat down with our Technical Manager Sean Harrington. Sean collaborates with medical facilities to design and deliver a bespoke solution for their needs.

Question: Who is your typical stakeholder when solving the problem of Fall Prevention?

Sean: When it comes to Fall Prevention and Detection we typically deal with two very different parties. The loved ones of an elderly family member or the leadership of a medical facility such as a hospital, care home. Most often we are the first point of contact after a fall has occurred and there is now a new need.

Question: What should one of these stakeholders expect from their experience with Tunstall Emergency Response?

Sean: Once I have received an information briefing from our sales team, I conduct a discovery process. This is essentially working with a family member or public health nurse, occupational therapist or clinical physicist to understand as best as possible what their need is. Often this includes a visit to the location where the fall has occurred. I find this really helps us in designing the best possible solution for the fall sufferer. I find communication and transparency with the stakeholder at this stage allows for trust to be built which is crucial in us delivering. When my team and I have completed our discovery stage we collaborate to design a bespoke solution.

Question: So when you have completed the design, what next?

Sean: Well one of two things typically happen. Most often in family situations we complete the fit out and provide a technical consultation. This ensures the family are comfortable and confident with the products we have delivered.

In the case of medical facilities, we find that testing ensures compliance with national regulation. In one particular scenario, a clinical physicist lab tested all of our products, taking each one apart and testing every component to ensure they were fit for purpose. As a Technical Manager I like this process. It is reassuring to know that once our products and solution are tested by the most educated medical devices engineers, that they are then given the ‘green light’ to be implemented into their entire hospital. That is very very rewarding.

Question: What are some of the most common products that are included in your Fall Prevention and Detection Solution?

Sean: I am in a good position as Technical Manager; I have a lot of top of the range products within my reach. We own the exclusive rights to all Tunstall and Alert-iT products on the island of Ireland. In a family home setting we install mostly Tunstall Bed Occupancy Sensors and Chair Occupancy Sensors. Both of these products come with communication devices that alert the carer to a potential fall. In the case of a recent hospital installation, our clinical physicist chose our Alert-iT product range. This was due to our technical ability to increase the range of frequency by adding a repeater to the product. All of our products integrate with each other, which enables the bespoke design.

An added benefit that we offer people is our industry leading monitoring centre. We understand it is often not possible for families to provide 24/7 care, so having the peace of mind that their loved one is under the care of our remote team is the next best thing. In care homes, the carers tell us that with our care clip, once they are notified that a Bed Occupancy Sensor and Chair Occupancy Sensor has been triggered, they immediately tend to the person and reset the sensors. By following this protocol, and thanks to our technology, their activity is recorded and they are now compliant with industry regulation.

Question: What is your top ‘fall prevention’ tip for a family member or clinical physicist, public health nurse or occupational therapist?

Sean: The old saying “prevention is better than cure”, as cliché as it sounds, it’s the only way to go. Perhaps there are families out there that are conscious a loved is no longer as good on their feet or is showing signs of Alzheimer’s or dementia. We suggest at this point that they reach out to us for a free consultation. There is no pressure from our end as our consultant team are there to help.

To learn more about how Tunstall Emergency Response could deliver Fall Prevention solutions for you please click here.

The HSE has a fall prevention programme, click here to learn more.