We have been able to trial the use of a U-Step walker. It is designed to aid the mobility of patients who suffer from Parkinson's Disease. It has two cueing functions, a laser guided line on the floor and a metronomic audio cue. They combine to counteract the common symptoms of Parkinson's such as slow shuffled gait and episodes of freezing. The aid has worked so well that we have been able to order some for patients to have at home. It is hoped that it will reduce the risk of falls, subsequent hospital admissions and improve patient's quality of life.
We have recently acquired a new piece of equipment to assist with the treatment of respiratory patients.
The Vest is a garment worn by the patient and is connected to an air pulse generator.
The air-pulse generator rapidly inflates and deflates the vest, gently compressing and releasing the chest wall. This process helps to dislodge mucus from the bronchial walls, and move it along toward central airways. The action also works to thin thick secretions, making them easier to clear. Once the mucus has moved from the smaller to larger airways, it can be easily removed by coughing or suctioning.
The Vest has proven to be suitable for people with a varied number of conditions which result in difficulties clearing respiratory secretions. However it is not suitable to use with everyone and each patient will be assessed by a physiotherapist for suitability as well as to ensure safety during use of The Vest.
Within the Therapies Team opportunities become available for External Training Courses than are relevant to the Service and the care of our patients and training of our students.
Some courses that staff members have recently been on are:-
- Deaf and Disability Awareness
- Mental Capacity Act - Care of the Elderly
- Northampton Parkinson's Disease Forum
- Posture and Balance in relation to the upper limb
- Care of the Acutely ill patient
- Educator training
In addition to these, more senior staff members will attend training to enable them to support students who have placements with the department, such as University of Northampton Educators Training or New Clinical Educator forum