Abacus Healthcare, a leading specialist in power-assisted baths, has launched a diverse communication programme to educate healthcare professionals, families and disabled bathers about the benefits of accessible bathing versus adapted showering.

Abacus Healthcare is a trusted and proven provider of specialist baths for disabled bathers. Supported by assessors nationwide, its range of hi-lo baths with transfer seats and bathing platforms deliver enhanced care and safety. To illustrate the multiple benefits of bathing for many living with disability, Abacus has launched a new campaign entitled: ‘Why assisted bathing can be better than adaptive showering’. This educational initiative is aimed at improving the well-being of bathers through greater knowledge and to empower those families and Occupational Therapists (OT) applying for facilities grants.Social media channels such as Twitter and Facebook will provide key platforms for discussion regarding the subject with a view to all participants including‘#BathingIsBetter’ in their comments and posts.

Despite a bathing culture in the UK, many Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) approvals and professional recommendations are tending towards bathroom showering adaptations instead of new hi-lo baths. An adaptive shower is commonly not first choice for disabled bathers and their families however Local Authorities may have budget restraints to consider. The viewpoint that an assisted bath can be more expensive to specify than conversion of an existing bathroom to an accessible wet room with adapted fixtures and fitting is not true in many situations. Hence Abacus has compiled professional and consumer-focused material that justifies the need for a bath instead of a wet room – essential information for parents of disabled children or OTs representing clients. This information is based on simple facts regarding legislation, safety, well-being and cost savings.

Kate Sheehan, an OT with over 30 years of experience, is supporting Abacus with this campaign and comments: “Throughout my client facing work I regularly meet families and disabled children who prefer bathing, however many are only offered a wet room or shower conversion through a DFG. Meeting grant budgets is indeed a challenge these days and all professionals have to consider what is necessary and appropriate, however there is clear legislation to support the case for bath provision. DFG legislation itself actually states that ‘…a bath or shower (or both), can be grant funded…’ which is backed up by The Housing Grants,Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 and the Children’s Act 1989. In addition the human rights of a disabled child need to be considered as children in the UK play at bath time. Play is a fundamental right as per the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989, so the case for supplying an assisted bath, irrespective of budget within reason, is a strong one.”

This educational programme by Abacus will regularly provide new information, downloadable guides, videos and advice across its website and social media channels. Abacus will be actively encouraging all healthcare professionals, carers, families and disabled bathers to get involved with discussions on social media regarding the benefits of bathing versus showering whilst using the campaign hashtag. Throughout this activity Abacus will continue to highlight the proven benefits of bathing by linking to its numerous end user case studies – real-life stories demonstrating how assisted Abacus baths deliver significant improvements to daily living.

To find out more about the campaign, visit the website HERE

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