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Care Home Development For Obese Residents: A Missed Opportunity?

There are always going to be a variety of issues related to the health of residents in care homes, but it’s now being said that some care homes – particularly the newly developed ones – are missing out on a crucial factor of care for residents.

The area which seems to be neglected is the needs of residents who are obese and those who have bariatric needs.

As our society becomes more and more reliant on sugars and fast food – as well as becoming more sedentary – it’s inevitable that our older generations will develop weight issues and all kinds of other health issues as a result.

This increase in people’s weight means that we now have to take this into account when building new infrastructures.

A study back in 2013 saw that weight increases for almost all age groups had occurred since the 1990s, with the number of people at a “healthy” weight falling quickly.

Obesity costs the NHS billions of pounds every year and in many areas care homes are failing or are unable to provide the right kind of care for bariatric residents.

While it’s hard to quantify what classes a person as being obese or “bariatric” – mainly because the NHS uses BMI, giving an index over 25 as being overweight, and over 30 as obese – but it’s thought that being over 20 stone in weight puts you in this region, with the extra weight making normal tasks that much more difficult.

weighting scales

What Infrastructure Is Needed?

There is plenty which can be done to make the lives of residents more comfortable, as well as making the jobs of care home staff easier, but here are just a few of the things which developers should be thinking about including.

When designing the bedrooms and bathrooms which residents will use, it’s important to factor in the space needed as well as the support and strength of the apparatus in the rooms.

  • Tracking hoist (overhead)
  • Bariatric bed for size and weight support
  • Specialist turning mattresses
  • Walk-in shower, easy access
  • Adjustable basin, easy usage

With things like these included in the specialist suites as standard it will make life much easier for residents.

The real key is to expand the space which is required, making it all one level, avoiding tricky climbing and descending and ensuring residents can fend for themselves when carrying out basic tasks.

A very real health issue, which will only become more prevalent in an ageing population, the basic needs of bariatric residents need to be addressed now.

There are several of these specialist suites already springing up across the country, but it’s feared some developers are ignoring the problem at hand – with retroactive action taken too late to help residents who pass away.

Aedifice Partnership is a leading consultancy and project management firm specializing in delivering high-quality projects across various sectors, including care homes, residential properties, education establishments, and commercial properties.

Our range of services includes project management, chartered building surveys, CDM and quantity surveying among others.

At Aedifice we are able to provide project management, design services and cost management services for care home development.

Contact us today to discuss your care home development project and our team will be happy to assist you.


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