Closomat Changing Places facility image

A joint venture between toileting specialist Closomat and safe patient handling expert Hillrom (Liko), a new Changing Places website has been launched which aims to educate visitors about the importance of installing the facilities in public places.

The partnership brings together Closomat’s expertise in toilet equipment and Hillrom’s (Liko) speciality in patient handling products to provide a complete service, from offering all the necessary equipment through to installation.

Six months ago, the two companies decided to create a unique resource for people to learn more about the importance of Changing Places toilets.

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James Rhodes, Marketing Manager at Hillrom, told AT Today: “We know that there are many disabled individuals within the UK who don’t have a place to change, which can really affect their dignity and increase anxiety when they are out in a public area. So, we wanted to drum up awareness surrounding Changing Places facilities and make facilities and the public aware that there is a solution.”

Closomat Changing Places facility image

The new website is aimed at both the general public and the relevant venues that might want to install a Changing Places unit in their building.

Commenting on why the two companies felt it was important to drive awareness about the facilities in the UK, James said: “it all comes down to the disabled individuals who don’t have the facilities to go to the bathroom or to get changed when they’re out and about and living life. Some individuals are reluctant to go to a public place because they fear that there will be nowhere for them to change or to go to the bathroom.

“We want to increase the dignity for these people whether they’re in a town centre, watching a football match or going to a concert. They should have the same ability to go to the bathroom as anybody else.

“Changing Places facilities are also very important for carers. If the right equipment is not available for the person they are caring for, there’s also the risk of injury to the carer who might be forced to manually take their clients out of their wheelchairs, get them onto the floor and then get them back into the chair.

“Another thing to remember here is that carers also need to visit the toilet when out in public areas, without the extra space and privacy screen which are both available within a changing places facility, the carer would need to leave loved ones outside alone, which again could increase anxiety and put individuals in a vulnerable situation.

“So, the importance of raising awareness about Changing Places is two-fold: you’re improving carer safety as well as improving dignity and making people feel more confident and comfortable when they’re going to public places.”

On the website, there’s some background information on the population that requires a Changing Places toilet and why they’re necessary for public spaces. The resource also covers the scope of equipment that’s required in a Changing Places facility alongside Building Regulations and compliance.

For instance, if a supermarket receives a complaint by someone in store that it doesn’t have a suitable Changing Places facility but the supermarket isn’t sure about compliance, requirements or how to install a unit, the microsite provides all the necessary information on Changing Places and Closomat can assist with the installation process.

Changing Places toilet image

Additionally, the website features some client and local MP testimonials on how important it is for them to have the facilities as well as helpful case studies. It also covers technical support on how Hillrom (Liko) and Closomat can assist with fully (C(DM) compliant project management.

James added: “There’s an ultimate guide available as well: a providers’ guide which can be downloaded to give them a one-stop-shop of all the necessary information they require, so they don’t need to keep searching online for the information.”

To view the new Changing Places website, visit: https://changingplaces.co.uk/

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