A new, innovative hoistable clothing range called Klip2Lift has launched. Available in two options, the range aims to be safer and easier to use than the conventional slings currently on the market.

Klip2Lift in use 1The Klip2Lift range includes a handling jacket for those who are ambulant and hoistable clothing for users who require full hoisting.

The range was developed by Occupational Therapy Senior Lecturer Jo-Anne Webb in collaboration with Barbara Ackley from The Disabled Living Centre charity, after spending years working with children and young people who had conditions such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy and were unable to move about or use the toilet without assistance.

Jo-Anne, who worked as an Occupational Therapist, noticed the distress that people often suffer when being hoisted in and out of wheelchairs using traditional all-in-one slings.

The slings can be difficult to remove once the person has been transferred and so for ease, the bulky straps were often left beneath patients all day, causing issues such as sores and ulcers.

Jo-Anne said: “This has always been a bugbear of mine. Carers transfer young people from a wheelchair onto a bed to take their clothes off, then hoist them onto the toilet.

“That tends to be too difficult for a lot of carers, so the disabled young person is often just put in a nappy all day, which is incredibly undignified for them.”

Her new system involves a waistcoat-style jacket, which the young person wears throughout the day and which can be clipped onto a hoist, along with a pair of detachable leg straps. These straps are removable and are only needed for the duration of the transfer from bed to wheelchair, or from wheelchair to toilet.

Klip2Lift Full Sling No BackgroundThe jacket also features conveniently positioned handles and is used for a variety of situations, including guidance when gait training or assisting users to stand and is available for children as young as three and up to smaller adult sizes.

An adaptation of the Klip2Lift jacket allows it to be used with a series of robust handles positioned at key points which means disabled people can be much more easily handled by physiotherapists who are providing them with mobility training, or by parents and carers of children with challenging behaviour.

Penny Townsend, a Paediatric Physiotherapist who has been using the system with young people in Huddersfield, said: “These jackets are excellent for people who are unsteady on their feet, and they allow carers to safely handle children with challenging behaviours, without having to physically hold or support their limbs to stop them running into the road or getting into other potentially dangerous situations. As well as being safer, using the jacket is much more dignified for the young person.

“There are a lot of other advantages to using these jackets. One young man I work with places his arms inside it when he is distressed, which helps him self-regulate his behaviour, while another young man arrives at school and goes straight to the cupboard to ask to put it on, and since wearing the jacket his meltdowns have decreased.”

The range is being sold exclusively by retailer Green Trousers and more information can be found HERE

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