Importance of Bariatric Medical Furniture: Adding Inclusivity to Your Practice 

In every practice, it is important to make all patients feel comfortable and safe while getting a wellness check or being seen for a health concern. Hospitals, medical offices and bariatric and cardiac clinics must be fully equipped to serve overweight and obese patients. So, what can be done to assure those men, women and children receive proper accommodations?

According to the CDC, as of September 2021, adult obesity rates are higher than 35% in 16 states across the US. Patients with a Body Mass Index (BMI) over 30 are considered obese. People with BMIs above 40 are severely obese. The typical bariatric patient is 100 to 200 pounds overweight. Because of this, all healthcare centers need to be outfitted with the proper equipment for care.

Bariatric Furniture Design Considerations

Bariatric furniture design takes in multiple factors. National Business Furniture cites that arm-width, shallow design and active load capacity are vital in assessing the stability of bariatric furniture, but also a comfortable and attractive design to assure these patients don't feel singled out when visiting a medical office. Safety and design are equally essential to creating a healthy, happy environment.

Bariatric-friendly design in waiting rooms, surgical rooms, and exam rooms alike should also include the following elements:

  • Pain reduction
  • Slip and fall reduction
  • Improvements to patients' sleep
  • Stress reduction
  • Depressed mood reduction
  • Social and physical support
  • Staff injury/stress reduction

Accommodations Bariatric Patients

Healthcare providers who deal with heart conditions/disease, diabetes, chronic pain, respiratory issues, sleep apnea or arthritis and facilities dedicated exclusively to bariatrics are also likely to see a higher percentage of bariatric patients. But the needs and specifications vary from one health care facility to another.

The International Health Facility Guidelines section on bariatric design highlights several design specifications and guidelines that facilities should plan to meet or exceed when considering bariatric accommodation:

  • Reception/Waiting Rooms – Seating should be available for bariatric patients and their (potentially) obese family members. Spaces for wheelchairs should also be included, along with power outlets for recharging electric units.
  • Patient Bedrooms/Inpatient Areas – Bedrooms should be large enough to fit more than one caregiver while allowing equipment movement. A minimum of about 5 feet should be clear to the front and sides of the patient's bed.
  • Staff Areas – Healthcare facility staff members may be obese as well, which means that meeting rooms, storage closets and break rooms should be designed with their needs in mind.

Custom Comfort Medtek's Solution

Custom Comfort Medtek emphasizes that safety, comfort and accessibility are vital for bariatric patients, and having functional medical furniture for everyone is imperative. Their full line of bariatric furniture products is designed to support at least 400 pounds, some up to 1,000 pounds. Their products include exam tables, step stools, donor beds, benches, blood draw chairs and more. Custom Comfort Medtek bariatric furniture items offer the following features:

  • Heavy-duty, welded steel frames
  • Storage drawers, cabinets or adjustable shelves
  • Pneumatic reclining
  • Powerlifting
  • Heavy-duty locking/swivel casters on mobile units
  • Built-in toe kicks

All Custom Comfort products are made in the United States, with the majority of raw materials and components also coming from domestic vendors. To learn more about Custom Comfort's high-quality products, visit our website today.

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