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Occupational Therapy led business goes retail British manufacturing on the up When margins matter

it to on! p e e k t ’ Don s it s a P f yoursel Circulation List

ButtonButton Back Back

16" 18" 18" 27"

16" 18" 18" 27"

18" 20" 20" 30"



The Senydd The Senydd

Seat to floor Seat width Seat depth Back height



Seat to floor Seat width Seat depth Back height


Size Chart Size Chart Petite

12 12


The Senydd The Senydd single motor singletilt-in-space motor tilt-in-space rise andrise recline and chair. recline chair. ilc W WN EaWreWilcare 25 stone 25maximum stone maximum user weight user weight as standard. as standard. rt omfort Comfo‘C tsg’ sea3tssizes,34sizes, back 4designs, back designs, 1 great1price great- price £485 - £485 ’s ungS peruan WALE E WALE SR S n n Also available Also available in 2 motor in 2 versions. motor versions. oilable o RE leva ailaba l. Bespoke sizings sizings and multiple and multiple additional additional deisl. modeBespoke is moth optionsoptions available. available. OF OF Regular Grande 18" 20" 20" 30"

2002 - 2013 2002 - 2013


20" 23" 22" 30"

20" 23" 22" 30"

EA Y0EA YR 01 S RS 1 “Raising “Raising the the standard” standard”


02 20

02 20


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And don’t forget And don’t to forget to follow me on follow Twitter me on Twitter @Wil_Dragon @Wil_Dragon

ktoCk StoCS 20 m for 11 itEm f itoEr myE day aa SamESd ippiNg hg ShippSiN

02 20

Follow us on Follow twitter: us on twitter: @wilcarewalesltd @wilcarewalesltd

Manufacturers Manufacturers of Bespoke of Bespoke & & Contract Contract Rise &Rise Recline & Recline ChairsChairs

Call our CallSales our Sales Hotline Hotline on 01446 on 01446 772227 772227

Wilcare Wales Wilcare Ltd, Wales Vale Business Ltd, ValePark, Business Llandow, Park,Cowbridge, Llandow, Cowbridge, Vale of Glamorgan Vale of Glamorgan CF71 7PF CF71 7PFmadeProudly Proudly in the UK made in the UK Telephone:Telephone: 01446 772227 01446 Fax: 772227 01446Fax: 772226 01446 Email: 772226 Email: Web: Web:

CE Marked products. Motor actuator/electrical systems conform to all known EU-CE requirements for low voltage and EMC levels. All fabrics conform to BS5852 parts 1&2 test procedures for the fire retardancy levels 0, 1 and the majority to woodcrib5.

Cushion Cushion Back Back

CE Marked products. Motor actuator/electrical systems conform to all known EU-CE requirements for low voltage and EMC levels. All fabrics conform to BS5852 parts 1&2 test procedures for the fire retardancy levels 0, 1 and the majority to woodcrib5.

ralLateral Support Support Back Back Waterfall Waterfall Back Back


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contents Support added for Trade Days.. 4 New buying strategy for NHS.... 8

From the Editor

Building the margins................ 10 Back in the market.................. 16 British market on the up ......... 20 Latest products, 30 years on... 30

We have a couple of new ‘Point of Viewers’ writing short items for us this month. The Points of View section is towards the end of the magazine.

Re-brand for specialist supplier.................................... 38 On the website........................ 46 OFT and scooter decision....... 48

We are always looking for new ‘contributors’ who can write short pieces with a message or observation about something that is happening in our marketplace or something that they have seen elsewhere that readers might well be interested in.

Going interactive..................... 52

But what’s the point? Why take the time and trouble to write something?

Points of View.......................... 66

Well, it’s a great way to raise your profile of your company in the marketplace as well as letting people know a little more about yourself. That can never been a bad thing and you might be surprised at the contacts you make in the process.

on the front

Life is all about opinions and we like to get a wide range of those in the magazine, so, if you have something on your mind and you’d like to get a point across, just email us your thoughts to

OT led business growth.......... 56 Retailer goes exclusive............ 65

An interesting use of characters as part of a re-brand. See page 38 for details.

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Help us to get the message through Just a reminder again, even though you might be getting the weekly trade email bulletins through fine just now, to ensure that you get them in the future, it would be useful to ‘whitelist’ on your server so that it is recognised as an email address that is allowed to send you mail. If you have fallen off our list for delivery, then it may be because we are being identified as being ‘spam’ by your server, so white listing our address should help us to get through.

You can find THIIS on Twitter at wwwthiiscouk

David N Russell AD4

Tel: 01536 710050 E-mail:

v3 12-11 Flash ad Thiis Mag:200x40



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Find out why on page 11 & 15


Medilink adds support for Trade Days The new trade only, business to business event , Trade Days has seen a number of new companies booking space during the past month. Support isn’t just coming from a growing list of companies booked onto the show floor and retailers looking forward to the first event in October next year, but also from organisations that see the potential of two days where the homecare, healthcare and assistive technology sector can come together to do business. It was announced a couple of weeks ago that Medilink UK is supporting the new event and will be promoting Trade Days to its membership. Medilink provides specialised business support to health technology companies around the country. Tony Davis Chair of Medilink UK said: “MUK recognises the importance of the assistive technology market and with this in mind is happy to support this new sales opportunity for its members.” Trade Days Show Director, Matthew Butler commented: “We are delighted that Medilink UK will be listed as a show supporter of Trade Days. The organisation works with a large number of companies, some of which are already supporting the show as exhibitors. Whether a Medilink member is looking to promote products by taking a stand or will visit the show to meet new suppliers and companies that they can form a business relationship with, we are confident that they will find Trade Days a useful and effective use of their time.” Reaction from both suppliers and retailers continues too. Dave Smith, Managing Director of Beactive Mobility said: “It’s about time that an event for trade only was conceived. We’ve found existing shows just too frustrating when it comes to trying to do business and so we will definitely attend Trade Days.” And Adam Spiby of Healthcare Matters agrees. “We have thought for some time that this would be a good idea and to see it come to fruition is brilliant. As a company that values suppliers and good working relationships with them, we are really looking forward to this opportunity. At other shows we can sometimes meet with suppliers, but their time is often taken up by professionals or




September 2013

end-users and so we often lack the opportunity to talk in depth. It’s great to have an event specifically to talk business.” And Tony Husband, Deputy Director of Bath Institute of Medical Engineering (BIME) has added the dates to his dairy, saying: “A much needed event - a great opportunity to do business in one place. I’m very impressed by the number of companies already signed up and it’s over 12 months away. We will be there.” As the organisers, CloserStill Media have been keen to point out right from the outset, Trade Days is different to any other UK show. The ‘trade “We have thought for some time that only’ aspect is key to this would be a good idea and to see developing a different feel it come to fruition is brilliant” to the event and to provide visitors with a different experience. It means that the exhibitor list will be different too. Of course, there will be the established suppliers and many of those have already booked. But Trade Days will offer an opportunity for companies that might not have considered promoting at an existing event. One company to book space recently was Dartex. The company has been around for 40 years and is a market leader in medical support surfaces for healthcare, supplying millions of “We’re absolutely clear that Trade metres of specialist Days will not be offering discounted healthcare fabrics worldspace” wide. Marketing Manager Zane Powers explained why the company had taken the decision to exhibit at Trade Days. “We supply manufacturers across the industry and so we are slightly different to many of the companies that will be exhibiting at Trade Days. We specialise in developing polyurethane coated fabrics which we’ve specifically engineered to help reduce pressure ulcers and improve infection control. We count some of the biggest names in the industry among our existing customer base including

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Invacare, Hill-Rom and ArjoHuntleigh who use our products in various healthcare applications and environments such as mattresses, wheelchairs, seating and positioning cushions, hoists and stretchers. We also help our manufacturing partners to introduce innovative products to the marketplace and are synonymous with reliable quality products.” He added: “We were very interested when the details of Trade Days were released. It’s the only event that I am aware of where the audience is 100% focused on the trade and that means we can speak to all the manufacturers together in an environment where they are not going to get distracted and where we will not get distracted either by other visitor types. That’s a really big attraction for us.” It isn’t just the manufacturers and suppliers that will be at Trade Days that are key for Zane. He is also very interested in talking to the retailers who will be there too. “It’s two-fold for us” he said. “The manufacturers are the direct customers for us and many of them are already very aware of who we are as we’ve been around for many years, but we want to actively engage with the retailers too, so that they know about and understand the products that we supply and how they can help to make the products that they sell better and more effective. If they buy in a mattress for a customer, for example, then it matters a great deal which fabric it is coated in and it will determine the quality of care that they are able to provide for their own customer. We are always looking to educate customers about what our products can do and Trade Days will give us a great opportunity to get in front of the whole trade for two days to do that.” Last month, Trade Days Show Director Matthew Butler mentioned that there may be a possibility that the show floor could be closed to new exhibitors some time before the event opens since he is keen to match the size of the exhibition to the potential trade only visitor numbers. He says that companies looking for last minute space, at a discount, will be disappointed. “We’re absolutely clear that Trade Days will not be offering discounted space” he said. “Apart from the fact that it is unfair to the companies that have committed to the event early, we strongly believe that it just doesn’t work for companies to decide to exhibit at something like Trade Days with just a couple of weeks to go. We’ll be doing a great deal of work to produce the trade audience for the exhibitors, but companies will

get much more from the event if they plan their own marketing campaigns and spend the time to produce really interesting and effective show promotions. You can’t do that if you come in to something very late.” The companies that have taken the decision to support the event over the past few weeks and add themselves to a growing list include Access Needs from Ireland. Director Kenny Moffat said: “Trade Days is an excellent initiative which will facilitate suppliers and retailers to engage in one venue and which hopefully will serve to stimulate and grow the whole sector. Access Needs is delighted to support this event in its infancy.” Mike Thompson, Managing Director of Jetmarine hopes that the event will be supported by everyone in the industry. He said: “Trade Days is a great opportunity for our trade customers to meet us and view the range of products knowing that we will be available and have the time to talk “I’m very impressed by the number of on commercial terms. companies already signed up” Hopefully the show will be well supported by manufacturers, importers and retailers, giving a dedicated window to show what products are available to the market.” And two other companies to make the decision to support the event are Electric Mobility and Sitting Pretty. Jonathan Hearth, Managing Director, of Electric Mobility Ltd said: “Electric Mobility is really excited by the opportunity ‘Trade Days’ presents to re-invigorate the value of exhibiting to our trade customers and demonstrate the wide and ever expanding range of new products and services. Electric Mobility has launched almost thirty new products over the last six months, all of which are only sold through retailers and we welcome the forum to grow our relationships with them further.” And Jim Henderson, Managing Director of Sitting Pretty added: “Trade Only was a key factor in us supporting this new exciting exhibition. I personally think that having such an exhibition in the healthcare sector will benefit all manufacturers in the long term.” If you would like to see a floor plan for Trade Days, call Clare Johnson on 01962 736 989 or email The website for the event is at www.tradedays.

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New NHS buying strategy – BHTA response In a recent email bulletin we carried details of what the government is calling a ‘radical new blueprint for how our NHS buys everything’. The plan covers everything that the NHS purchase, including, of course, all the products from our sector. You can read the full details of the plan on the THIIS website in the news section. Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter said, when he announced the new scheme: “The Government is putting an extra £12.7 billion into our NHS but that money needs to be spent much more wisely by local hospitals. When our NHS is the single biggest organisation in the UK, hospitals must wake up to the potential to make big savings and radically change the way they buy supplies, goods, services and how they manage their estates. We must end the scandalous situation where one hospital spends hundreds of thousands more than another hospital just down the road on something as simple as rubber gloves or syringes, simply because they haven’t got the right systems in place to ensure value for money for local patients.” It won’t come as a surprise to people in the industry that findings have shown that there is little consistency in the way our NHS spends money. The announcement of the scheme suggested that ‘very few senior people in NHS hospitals know what good procurement looks like.’ One of the ideas is to ensure hospitals publish what they pay for goods and services and another is the setting up a brand new ‘price index’ so NHS buyers can see how much they are spending on different products compared to others. The BHTA were quick off the mark with comments about the new procurement strategy. BHTA Director General Ray Hodgkinson said: “We welcome a number of the measures set out by Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter to improve NHS procurement practice and ensure the NHS budget is spent as effectively as possible to secure the best outcomes for patients. The assistive technology sector already creates substantial cost savings for the NHS by helping to enable more people to live independently for longer and thereby keeping them out of hospitals and secondary care. The sector also plays a major role in preventative medicine.” He added: “The BHTA and our members have


September 2013

worked with GS1 (the global organisation to provide bar codes for products) on creating a bar code system for our products to which the public sector has free access. This is enabling greater transparency, improving efficiency and reducing costs. The most recent development “Hospitals must wake up to the is the Health Hub Code potential to make big savings and Bank. In order to achieve radically change the way they buy its aims, the Government supplies” must be wary of reducing choice or marginalising SMEs. The new strategy mentions a potential “over-reliance” on framework agreements. What would really help the Government’s aims and support SMEs would be to reduce the burden of the tender process. Significant costs are often incurred unnecessarily at present. We hope to “Very few senior people in NHS see industry fully included hospitals know what good in any discussions. We procurement looks like” want to be able to bring our significant expertise in procurement to these discussions in order to create improvements to the system.” He concluded: “A good example of where we are already working to save NHS costs is in relation to the £3.5 billion cost of pressure ulcers and the harms associated with them. Considerable improvements in this area are achievable with minimal “The assistive technology sector extra resources. One key already creates substantial cost initiative is ‘Your Turn’, a savings for the NHS” campaign set up by BHTA to promote pressure ulcer prevention. One PCT saw a 25% reduction in pressure sores after six months support from ‘Your Turn’. Providing appropriate pressure redistributing support surfaces, such as specialist mattresses, is essential to preventing and managing pressure ulcers.” The BHTA website is at The Health Hub Code Bank website is at www.



Simple steps to build margins You hear it all the time in business. The margins are too thin, the margins are being squeezed, the margins don’t make it worth our while. Now there’s a new resource that aims to beef them up… We very often have stories about new start-ups in the industry but less so on new companies not directly entering the market but offering services to the suppliers in the market. Margin Matters is a new company which has been launched by Mike Lord, formerly CEO of Minivator and recently appointed Chairman of Kirton Healthcare Group and Ian Burrows, a previous MD of Sunrise Mobility and Operations Director at Minivator. Ian will be heading up the new business and he told us more about it, explaining what the business is all about. “All too often” he said, “we find businesses so focused on growing sales that they don’t get the best margin possible from each sale. Our experience is that all businesses have significant additional profits they can achieve without growing sales at all. Our business helps unlock this potential by focusing either on purchase cost savings or on manufacturing efficiency.

It’s all about profit and loss




September 2013

This could be as simple as finding another Ian Burrows says that supplier in the UK or as complicated as starting there are some simple a manufacturing facility in China. Our third things that businesses can do to increase senior team member is Shirley Sun who lives margins and operates in China where we can even offer warehousing for QC and consolidation of shipments.” It seems a very simple proposition and Ian went on to explain a little more about the business model. “Essentially how we operate is to either act as their in house expert “We find businesses so focused on or to teach the companies to become self-sufficient growing sales that they don’t get the themselves. We can do best margin possible from each sale” this on a consultancy basis or on a share of the savings we make over a number of years to make this easily affordable.” Ian says that Margin Matters can source either components, complex assemblies or complete products as well as advising on simple ways to improve the quality, cost or lead time in production. “We have significant experience and a pool of resources which will allow us to tailor our “All businesses have significant service to match small or additional profits they can achieve large companies looking without growing sales at all” to improve their margin in whatever way. We are not a parts supplier, but find the right partners for our clients and then help manage the change. We typically share a percentage of the savings in the short term, whilst our clients get the long term benefit of the relationship with new suppliers and or improvements in manufacturing processes.” On the website, there is a challenge that you can complete by “We are not a parts supplier, but find which you can the right partners for our clients and test the team’s then help manage the change” ability to provide an effective service for you. Call 01562 519099 or visit the website at

All you’ll pay if you use a quarter page advert to promote your products or services in THIIS magazine.

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Conference dates set for OT Practice A few months ago in the magazine we published an article about The OT Practice and featured a conference that had been held for the Therapists involved with the company. Details of the 2014 conference have by the Susie Lamplugh Trust. Kate just been released and there are explained: “We believe it is essential that opportunities for companies to get all Therapists working in people’s own involved with sponsorship of various homes are aware of the risks and the parts of the day. The 2014 conference speaker is going to address the issues of will be held on Friday 21st March at the lone working and how we can make sure Hilton Hotel, Gatwick. we are safe when assessing and treating OT Practice Director, Kate Sheehan in someones home.” told us: “We hold an annual conference There are also sessions on the legal to enable our Therapists to keep up to duties in report writing and case notes, date on our business goals but also to delivered by a solicitor and a CPR address some key areas of Continuing update, which, Kate says, is vital as a Professional Development that our team significant number of The OT Practices’ have highlighted to us as important to clients have complex disabilities and it is them during our appraisal process.” important that each therapist is confident This year the conference includes to administer CPR if necessary. There will BHTA Awards Advert:BHTA Complain A5 4pp 28/8/13 Page sessions on lone working delivered also be10:15 an update on 1the OT Practices’

cloud based case management system. The conference is also about networking as Kate added: “The OT Practice has over 100 therapists from across the UK and it is good to meet up and discuss changes in clinical practice or just discuss one particular case. We are also going to have a number of product suppliers exhibiting so the therapists can update their equipment and service knowledge. If you would like more information about the conference and the opportunities for companies to get involved, call Kate on 01628 857144 or email on

BHTA Annual Awards Dinner 2013 7.00pm, 5th December 2013 at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel, South Kensington, London The British Healthcare Awards and Independent Living Design Awards will be presented by BBC Breakfast’s Bill Turnbull in a glittering evening that celebrates the very best of the industry.

This is the perfect opportunity to host your customers, motivate your team or extend your networks over a delicious three course dinner with wine, music and dancing – a night to remember. Book your place now at Contact BHTA on 020 7702 2141 or email:

BHTA Annual Conference 2013, Thursday 3rd October 2013, National Motorcycle Museum, Birmingham. Book your place now:

New products for Children and Teenagers Following on from the launch of the Hoggi rehab buggies range, Hewerdine has added three more products. The Hoggi Supra Light SWG Wheelchair is a sporty, lightweight, yet rigid wheelchair. According to the company, its unique design means it is height adjustable and has endless seat sizes, so can grow with the child. Seat widths are from 24cm – 40cm, with depths from 17cm – 45cm. The Hoggi Flux walker is used behind the child, so that there are no structural parts in front whilst the child is walking. The open-fronted frame encourages upright posture and natural walking movements, so that the child is using and developing their own natural walking style and the Hoggi Swingbo 2 wheelchair has different pushbar and push-handle options available, meaning many more seat configurations can be achieved, allowing more comfort for the child and easy handling of the wheelchair for the carer.

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Back in the market with a new storage option At the end of 2012 Brian and Margaret Hayes sold a business that many in the industry will have been aware of and quite a few will have done business with. Sheerlines produced scooter canopies and wheelchair and scooter rainwear.

Exhibition & Event Guide

Rather than enjoy a restful retirement, the couple are back in business, this time with a new scooter shelter. Brian told us: “Many scooter users do not have a garage to house their product and have to park them outside their houses or care homes. As you can imagine, it isn’t pleasant to come out to a wet scooter seat with a little pool of water in the middle and wet leaves in Autumn. And, of course, scooter electronics remain susceptible to failure when allowed to get wet.” He added: “Typically wooden sheds are bought to house scooters and there are large and heavy folding ‘garages’ made from steel and PVC. The cheapest of these retails for £175.00 and prices go up to £275.00. Many owners have expressed

Brian and Margaret Hayes are back involved in the marketplace with their new product which is clearly a winner with their grandchildren!

September 18-19 2013 – Scottish Naidex – SECC. September 25-28 2013 – Rehacare, Dusseldorf. September 30- October 2 2013 – The Back Exchange, Hinckley. www. October 8-10 2013 – Medtrade, Orlando. November 12-13 2013 – Care Show, NEC. November 20-23 2013 – Medica, Dusseldorf. November 21 2013 – Kidz Up North, Event City, Trafford Centre. 0161 607 8200 November 26-27 – The OT Show, NEC. January 27-30 2014 - Arab Health, Dubai. January 29-31 2014 - Moving & Handling People, Business Design Centre, London. March 10-12 2014 – Medtrade Spring, Las Vegas. March 27 2014 – Kidz in the Middle, Ricoh Arena, Coventry. April 29 – May 1 2014 – Naidex National, NEC. June 3-5 2014 – OT Conference. Brighton. June 17-18 2014 - NAEP, Kenilworth. Call 0191 233 6719. June 25-26 – Health+Care, Excel, London. Call 020 7348 5261 July 7-9 2014 – Posture & Mobility Group Conference. October 5-6 2014 – Trade Days, NEC.




a wish for a drive in shelter. Our new Scooter Shelter retails from just £73.00 for a model that will can be set up on grass or £99.50 for a model that has four fillable water bottles which enables the shelter to be set up on a tarmac drive.” Brian says that it is a simple sell. “It’s a simple one size fits all, is very light in weight, easy to put up, taking just 10-20 minutes and with its small folded size retail shops will easily be able to carry it on their shelves.” For more information on the new product, call 01384 221134. The website is at www.

September 2013

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Karma Mobility Ltd Unit 6 Target Park, Reddtich, Worcestershire B98 8YN T: 0845 630 3436 E:

Notice From 24 June 2011, Roma Medical Aids Limited imported and sold the ‘1300: Roma Self-Propelled Wheelchair (Orbit)’ and ‘1330: Roma Car Transit Wheelchair (Orbit)’ (“the Products”). In September 2012, Karma Medical Products Corporation Limited and Karma Mobility Limited issued proceedings in connection with Registered Design Number 3024771. These proceedings have been resolved on amicable terms. In accordance with those terms, Roma Medical Aids Limited has agreed to cease importing the Products and shall not be offering the Products for sale after 22 October 2013.

British rise and recline market on the up The seating sector looks to be in good shape, with a number of companies reporting steady growth. Wilcare Wales has invested recently to develop further in a marketplace that its Managing Director believes holds plenty of promise…. “The tide is beginning to turn for British rise and recline chair market, and it is about time”. That’s the view of Wilcare Wales Managing Director Anthony Kiff who says that UK manufacturers with a quality product are finding new and more effective ways to compete with imported items. “In recent years the market has been flooded with imports that I am convinced are just not of the same quality of UK producers” he told us. “This is a problem for manufacturers and the UK as a whole, not just for our sector. We can never compete with the bottom of the market, but we don’t need to.” He believes that customers are starting to appreciate the type of products available from Wilcare. “Signs are that people in our sector are starting to turn back to quality, home produced chairs, albeit slowly.” And, he says, it’s all about building a brand that customers can trust and have confidence in. “In world markets the most successful products are the ones that symbolise all that is best about British craftsmanship and design; whether you are talking Jaguar and Aston Martin, Scotch whisky, Burberry, you name it, great British brands are admired and in demand the world over. And I believe that is the way for our sector to go, giving customers the bespoke products and service that box shippers from overseas cannot match.” “I know that times are hard for everyone” he says, “but I think that we should think beyond buying cheap imports as an end in itself, and of course quality lasts.” Anthony is a keen supporter of backing manufacturers who are building businesses here in the UK. “In product terms British manufacturers are close at hand to support should problems arise and that is a major advantage for the healthcare sector. We should all do our bit to support British manufacturing. I’m not calling about a return to the ‘I’m Backing Britain’ campaign, but if as consumers we all think a little harder of the knock-on effect our buying decisions cause. It might help return our economy to a stronger footing and mean the Government’s current austerity measures end even sooner and that has to be good for everyone’s welfare.” As MD of Wilcare, one of his most important tasks, he says, is to ensure the company is moving with the times and the market trends. “We have an ageing population, people are living longer and the market potential is massive, with over 10-million over 65 years old in the UK and this is set to double over the next 20 years. As an industry we must embrace and anticipate this changing society. People want and deserve


September 2013

to be nursed at home, they want to keep their Wilcare MD, Anthony Kiff, believes that the tide is independence as long as possible and we must turning for UK production use all the technology and innovation to making that happen.” And that means new and more sophisticated “Signs are that people in our sector products according to are starting to turn back to quality, Anthony. “I can remember home produced chairs” when we first started, the main requirement was for a basic rise and recline chair, but these days we respond to individual customer needs, especially when it comes to pressure care and management, which becomes even more critical with people staying at home, where care conditions are different. Essentially, this means higher spec chairs. Ours is a specialist niche marketplace, but it is growing and more manufacturers are entering it and I welcome this; we all need competition to develop, competition that “Ours is a specialist niche brings innovation.” marketplace, but it is growing and But, although the more manufacturers are entering marketplace is growing, it and I welcome this; we all need Anthony fears that the competition to develop, competition manufacturing base isn’t that brings innovation” developing fast enough to supply the products that are going to be in demand. “What concerns me is the shrinking of the manufacturing skills base in the UK, we have lost manufacturing capacity as a nation and with it the skilled workforce has diminished, we have lost ground. Wales was a hotbed of traditional skills in this sector, but with the demise of large employers like Christie Tyler, a vast experienced workforce was lost to industry, we need to do something about that. We must attract more young people to our industry and to show them that a fulfilling career can be had in craftsman-based furniture sector.” Anthony pictured with It’s seen as a priority at Wilcare as Anthony some of the team members. The number of explained: “We are addressing this in a number employees is growing


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of ways. We are up-skilling our own workforce, broadening their own horizons and this personal development angle has a great effect on staff morale and motivation. Secondly, we are working with various providers to develop an apprenticeship programme within Wilcare and we are supporting The Association of Master Upholsterers in their efforts in this direction as well.” As well as developing the Wilcare team, Anthony believes that companies like Wilcare need to develop close relationships with retailers. “I think that going forward as industry manufacturers must work even more closely with retailers, so that we can all respond to client requirements faster and better. It is by working in partnership that we can benefit everyone, and chiefly the lives of the end user. There is always an open invitation for retailers to work with us, come to the factory, meet our people and see what we are all about and what we can achieve together.” He sees the new Trade Days event as a great opportunity to develop those relationships. “We were delighted to be one of the first companies to sign up to Trade Days 2014. This kind of event really brings the industry together, a meeting of minds. I am looking forward to meetings with exactly the right people we like to get close to. I would also encourage our colleagues in the industry to support this innovative event, get onboard and make it a real success.” “I think anyone who knows me” he said, “and knows Wilcare will identify that we are not in the business of shifting boxes, there has to be more to life than that. I know there is because the majority of our people have been working in the furniture industry all their lives and are as passionate as ever about producing quality products. It’s in their blood, it’s what they do. But we don’t see ourselves in isolation, we build longterm relationships all along the supply-chain, we all support each other and I think this partnership approach proves itself time and again and you notice it most when times are hard and you all pull

As part of its expansion,

together and get through.” Wilcare has invested £200,000 in two AXYC “We’ve had a very good six months” he CNC wood routing reported, “with sales up 25 per cent year on year, machines, enabling it but we are working incredibly hard to achieve this to increase production output of internal frames and investing heavily in new technology to keep and components by 50% us at the leading edge of innovation, which is where I want to be. This has included £200,000 investment across the business including two AXYZ CNC wood routing machines, as well as infrastructure improvements staff expansion, enabling us to increase production output of “We are not in the business of shifting internal frames and boxes, there has to be more to life components by 50%.” than that” And the growth has resulted in new jobs too. “We have created five new jobs in our upholstery, woodworking, preparation and shipping departments.” At the end of the day though, Anthony believes that the key to future success is simple. “Ultimately, it all goes back to giving customers exactly what they want with absolutely bespoke solutions to their requirements, be the order for one or one hundred chairs and that’s what Wilcare is all about. Wilcare can be contacted on 01446 772227. Anthony says that these days it’s very much about The website is at responding to individual needs


Wet Weather Wear from Able2 E-mail: 22

September 2013

Tel: 01254 619000


Trade Fair and Congress

60 year celebrations raise £14k

Düsseldorf, Germany 25 – 28 September 2013

For further information contact ITSL Ltd _ Ramsay House _ Marchmont Farm Link Road _ Hemel Hempstead _ Hertfordshire _ HP2 6JH Tel 01442 230033 _ Fax 01442 230012

2013-05-22 RehaCare 2013_Großbritannien_Rehacare_98 x 297 + 3mm_Thiis_4c_2189

Self-determined living

When people ask just how old our marketplace is, a good barometer is the significant anniversaries that are beginning crop up more and more frequently. We have plenty of companies that have gone past the ’20 years’ mark and we have recently had a number that have achieved 30 years. Go past 30 years and there are a good deal fewer. As mentioned previously in the magazine, around 30 years ago there were about 30-40 companies that were selling mobility products regionally and locally with the earliest showrooms popping up. So, to find a retailer that has a 60 year history is pretty rare. The retailer in question is Millercare, based in the North West and with a number out outlets. As part of its sixtieth anniversary celebrations, Millercare set itself the challenge of raising £10k to support the work of The Christie Hospital in Manchester. Established in 1952, Millercare wanted to celebrate the milestone by not only recognising the hard work of its’ team but also by taking on a challenge to help a very worthwhile cause. Fundraising events that took place during the anniversary year included a Casino Night, Spice Night, Family Fun Day, Barbeque, Tandem Skydive, running the Manchester Marathon and even a charity car wash by the team in Blackpool. The anniversary year was closed by Millercare hosting a charity gala dinner at The Renaissance in Manchester which was attended by over 250 guests, including staff, suppliers and customers. It was there that it was announced that the target of £10k had been far exceeded and in fact the final total was £14,961.33. Call 0800 652 6590 or visit the website at www.millercare.

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One Button Digital Radio launches

Sensory in a suitcase a winner for Nursery Norfolk-based Strawberry Patch Nursery is the latest nursery in the UK to benefit from a Sensory-in-a-Suitcase Deluxe from SensoryPlus. The Sensory-in-a-Suitcase includes a range of sensory equipment which is ideal for therapy, education and play activities. The Space Projector and coloured fibre optics provide a stunning visual display, while the tactile balls and colour packs enable interaction. These tools are complimented by sound makers and natural music to promote rest and relaxation, making the Sensory-in-a-Suitcase what the manufacturers describe as ‘an ‘Aladdin’s cave’ of sensory stimuli’. Sensory environments are designed to provide a safe and

A new single button radio has been produced, designed with dementia sufferers in mind. The radio has been developed by BIME in response to customer requests The One Button Digital Radio is a portable Roberts digital radio, adapted with a special secure cover so it can be controlled with one button. The idea is to be able to turn the radio on and off easily without the need to manage other radio features - these can be preset. Once the radio is tuned to the station of choice at the preferred volume and tone fit the secure cover and day to day use is by pressing the yellow on/off button. For more information on the radio, call 01225 824103 or go to bime

engaging area in which children with special needs can play and learn. Imaginative learning is openly encouraged and there is the freedom to roam and discover new experiences, completely uninhibited. Senses such as sight, smell, touch and sound are stimulated and heightened in order to improve cognitive and physical abilities in a fun and interactive way. A Sensoryin-a-Suitcase is a way of delivering the benefits of a fixed environment where a designated space is not available. Call 01440 705 352 or visit the website at

Film company in search for old chair A film production company has put a call out for an early wheelchair that they would like to use in an upcoming feature film about the life of Stephen Hawking. They are looking for a BEC 103, BEC 109 or similar to hire or buy. “The Theory of Everything” charts the life of Stephen Hawking (played by Eddie Redmayne) from his days at university in the early 1960s, through his diagnosis of motor neurone disease, his battle with the illness and his incredible academic achievements and way of looking at the world. The company says that, as they need


September 2013

to match the chair with an historical reference picture, modification may be needed. The production company has made contact with specialist wheelchair technicians who can do any work needed. The BEC that Stephen Hawking used was front wheel drive, with all 4 wheels the same size. It had a chrome frame and blue upholstery. If you have a model or know where one might be, please call Daisy Popham on 0208 584 1115 or email daisypopham@


Patterson Medical Incontinence Range Did you know that it is estimated three to six million people have some degree of urinary incontinence and it effects twice as many women as men. There are several types of urinary incontinence, but the two most common thought to be responsible for over 9 out of 10 cases are: • Stress incontinence • Urge incontinence With most of these issues effecting customers on a daily basis and an aging population growing, how will you be helping your customers to manage their incontinence problems? How Patterson Medical can help you, and your customers with their wide range of incontinence products: • Range of incontinence briefs, pants and pads • Reusable seat pads to protect home furniture • Bed protectors • Waterproof fitted mattress • Also a wide range of commodes, bed pans, and urinals to help daily living needs

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New marketing manager for Kirton Kirton Healthcare has appointed Vanessa Hands to the role of Marketing Manager. A languages graduate, Vanessa has worked in the Marketing and PR industry for three years, and went travelling to South America prior to joining the Kirton team. She spent time at C.A.S. Marketing where she worked on a number of PR accounts for companies in the industry. Vanessa’s appointment comes at a key time for Kirton. As reported in the last issue of the magazine, Group Founder and Chairman, Martin Battye has announced his retirement from the company, facilitated by a management buyout. The new management team includes senior members of the current Kirton team, including Group Managing Director Beverly Lawrence, along with key associates of the industry such as Mike Lord, Chairman of the BHTA, who has become non-executive Chairman. Vanessa said: “I am delighted to have joined the Kirton Healthcare Group at such an exciting time. Everyone at Kirton is extremely hardworking and dedicated, and there is a real sense of team spirit which is fantastic.” Vanessa has experience working within the

healthcare industry, and hopes to put these skills to good use at Kirton to help drive the business forward. She is also fluent in Spanish and Portuguese, having studied both languages at degree level, which may help Kirton in its bid to establish a greater presence overseas. Vanessa’s role will involve working on all aspects of marketing to continue to enhance Kirton’s brand awareness and strengthen the company’s communication with customers on various levels. She will also be working on improving the company’s internal communication, which has taken increasing precedence since its acquisition of A J Way in 2010. Beverly Lawrence, Group Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to have Vanessa on the team. Her experience in the healthcare sector coupled with marketing and PR knowledge makes her an ideal candidate, and we are sure she will do full justice to the role.” For more information about Kirton Healthcare, call freephone 0800 212709 or visit the website at


All the exhibitors were under cover this year for the first time

The latest products, 30 years on

Telford was the new venue for the Roadshow this year

Last month we carried an article that looked at the history of the Mobility Roadshow. This month we take a look at the event that took place this year, which, for the first time, was in a new location… The Mobility Roadshow took place in Telford this year at the Telford International International Centre. Moving the Roadshow around the UK means that exhibitors have the opportunity to get in front of a different audience, but it also means that everyone has to get used to a new venue every few years. The big difference this year was that the exhibitors that were traditionally based outside were under cover this year. Of course, that takes away the issues of bad weather causing a problem but it also takes away one of the unique aspects of the event too. With every exhibitor in an exhibition hall the event does run the risk of becoming ‘just another exhibition’. Jacqui Jones, Chief Executive of Roadshow organiser Mobility Choice gave us this honest appraisal of the Telford show. “The response to moving the Mobility Roadshow to a new location has been mixed, which is not unexpected for a new venue” she told us. “There is no doubt that Telford met one of our key objectives, which was to take the event back to a more central location, making it more accessible to as many visitors as possible, especially from Northern counties. Visitor numbers from the North West have confirmed that this was

achieved. Generally visitors and exhibitors liked the light atmosphere and spaciousness of the Telford International Centre. The response from exhibitors was very mixed. Those on the positive side appreciated that sales enquiries were of higher quality, rather than quantity which delivers their marketing objectives: more than one said this was the event for them.” She added: “This was the first time in the show’s history that exhibition space was entirely indoors, “The response to moving the Mobility which some felt lacked the Roadshow to a new location has Roadshow’s atmosphere been mixed, which is not unexpected that inside/outside space for a new venue” delivers, especially on a sunny day - an ‘event’ rather than just an exhibition. However, had we experienced the same appalling summer weather that we have seen in recent years, I have no doubt that there would have been 100% endorsement for the change.” Jacqui concluded: “Although there were logistical aspects of the venue that would need to be addressed if we were to consider taking the Roadshow back to Telford, the venue staff and management were generally very receptive to our needs.”

The Pool Pod swimming pool lift was voted most desirable product by visitors to this year’s Roadshow. Joint runners up were the Morph folding wheel and the HandSteady cup with a rotatable handle. The folding wheel was conceived by Duncan Fitzsimmons when he was a graduate student at London’s Royal College of Art. Originally designed as a folding bicycle wheel, he redesigned it as a wheelchair wheel following feedback from disabled visitors at a previous Mobility Roadshow.


September 2013



Here are details of some of the new products visitors saw…. New tricycle for Quest Quest 88, launched a new tricycle at the Roadshow. The Draisin Endurance is the latest addition to a growing portfolio of all ability cycling products. The company describes the product as an ‘exceptionally stable tricycle featuring a low threshold, front suspension with adjustment lockout and seven-speed gears with a front V brake and back pedal brake’. The company also has the Draisin Endurance, which is a semi-recumbent Draisin Relaxino tricycle, designed to be stable and manoeuvred intuitively and ideal for people with Cerebral Palsy,

Multiple Sclerosis and balance impairment, along with amputees. The Relaxino features seven gears which the rider can select using a twist grip mechanism, and there are several gearing options to choose from, including reverse. An electric motor is also available. Quest 88 can be contacted at 0845 604 7258. The website is at

Designed for the 21st century Here’s an interesting little product that has been designed as the next generation of mouse mats with a particular attraction to customers in our marketplace. The designer says that the traditional mouse mat is still stuck in the 20th Century, leaving users struggling to balance their mouse on the arm of a sofa, chair or lap. The Slouch Mat is a mouse mat for use on uneven surfaces. The mouldable base makes the bottom of the mat ‘slouch’ around the arm of a chair, duvet, car dashboard, or the user’s lap, creating a stable, even surface. Gripping dots mean it holds firmly and without slipping in even the most uneven locations and the optically friendly coating means a laser mouse will track smoothly and accurately across its surface.

Slouch Mat inventor, entrepreneur Nuala Lewis, says: “Whilst Slouch Mat has already sold thousands in national retail, we believe it is a great living aid and sits perfectly on the arm of a wheelchair. She told us: “I invented Slouch Mat to solve a problem for me. I liked to surf the internet on my sofa and when I used my mouse, I simply had nowhere suitable to rest it, so invented Slouch Mat. We launched Slouch Mat at the Gadget Show Live in April 2012 and almost straight away we realised that it was perfect for wheelchair users. It sits easily on the arm of a wheelchair or comfortably on a lap. Wheelchair uses explained that often they cannot fit underneath a desk, so use their mouse on their lap, and therefore the Slouch Mat is perfect. Following this feedback we recently exhibited at the Roadshow where Slouch Mat was a big hit and sold like hot cakes” For more information on the product, call Nuala Lewison 07932 781966 or email info@slouchmat.

New ranges from Cyclone Cyclone Technologies launched a range of wheelchairs from GTM Mobil Technology. Designed for active rehabilitation, lifestyle and professional sports use, each wheelchair in the range is bespoke The chairs are to the user, providing individually made an enhanced postural position, high levels of comfort and optimum chair performance. According to the company, the chairs are individually made using only the highest quality materials such as aircraft quality aluminium, kevlar and carbon fibre. Components such as alloy castors are milled from a block, in order to ensure maximum quality and inherent strength.


September 2013

The company also showed the Tailwind which is produced by Clinton River Medical Products. Cyclone say that the product offers the style and comfort of a manual chair, combined with the on-board support of quiet and discreet motors which deliver a signal to provide a smooth boost of power as and when required. With the help of a built-in computer controlled by a single conveniently located on/off switch, the wheelchair helps users to navigate challenging terrain – uphill, downhill, across grassy areas and other uneven surfaces, being provided with just the right amount of assistance for any given situation. Contact Cyclone on 01964 623 881. The website is at www.

Tailwind – The Tailwind helps users navigate challenging terrain


Providing solutions to the UK’s staircase challenges through our extensive network of approved dealers As a responsible stairlift supplier, we offer our approved dealers: • A complete and reliable product range to suit any staircase • 70+ years of combined technical expertise shared in our comprehensive training programme • A speedy response to enquiries through our dedicated UK customer service team • A unique, hands-on business support package to focus time on customer care When buying an Access BDD stairlift from one of our approved UK dealers, you can be assured you are getting a reliable product, expert installation and professional before and after sales customer service all from a company endorsed by Access BDD.

Why go anywhere else? To find out more about the full range of Access BDD products, call the UK team on 01642 853 650 Email – Website – Access Business Development Division (Access BDD) / A division of ThyssenKrupp Access Ltd. Unit E3, Eagle Court, De Havilland Avenue, Preston Farm Business Park, Stockton on Tees, TS18 3TB, England


In the pink! The Active Hands Company has introduced a new pink version of its general purpose gripping aid, to offer a colourful alternative to the original black product. The product range includes general purpose gripping aids for using items such as games consoles, a hammer for DIY or a trowel for gardening, to aids specifically designed for taking on sports such as skiing or using exercise equipment at the gym. Active Hands also offers a mini aid product designed for children under five, which helps to improve their grip with items such as the handlebars on a tricycle and is available in pink and blue.

The company was established in 2007 after Managing Director, Rob Smith, experienced a high-level spinal cord injury at the age of 20. Frustrated with the lack of equipment available to help with his limited hand function, Rob began to design a range of aids to enable him to live more independently. The gripping aids have proved popular with people who have had injuries or illnesses including spinal cord injury, stroke, MS and cerebral palsy. Call 0121 247 9152. The website for the company is at

New wheelchair carrier Autochair launched the new Liberty wheelchair carrier at the show. It is simple to operate with the ability to load or unload a wheelchair in under 90 seconds. Operating with a wireless hand controller, its side-door opening function means that less space is needed around the vehicle so that it can be parked in smaller, confined spaces. It is ideal for home garages, multi-storey car parks and

parking locations with restricted heights. The Autochair Liberty is one of the lightest wheelchair rooftop carriers in the world and can confidently lift manual or powered folding wheelchairs. Its versatile design means it can fit on the majority of vehicle rooftop bars. For more information on the Autochair product range call 0800 988 0070, email info@autochair. or visit

New website for Trike Company The Mountain Trike Company has completed an overhaul of its website and there is now the facility for customers to shop and buy their products online. Talking about the new site Tim Morgan, Inventor and Managing Director said, ‘We realised that our online offering was crucial to the way we communicate our product and service to people, the site has been under development for some time now and I am really pleased to be announcing the launch of the redesign. It now caters for the different user groups we are aiming the Trike at, the flow and usability has been greatly improved and hopefully the user will feel they have come onto a platform that offers more than just a place to purchase a wheelchair. The aim is to build a community for Trike users - we will share our knowledge but we also want to make it a place where people can provide useful information in this field.” Tim added: “having recently announced that we are now able to accept orders directly from customers in the United States the timing felt perfect to move away from and bring the

brand to a more global level by changing to .com.” There is also now a range of useful accessories that fit and work with the Mountain Trike such as a Sports Rack that enables the user to secure baggage, picnic hampers, a Push Handle providing a comfortable pushing point for times when rider may need a helping hand and an Adventure Rack, which combines the sports rack and push handle. The new website is at

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September 2013

Team of the Year



New products from RGK RGK launched the Vita which incorporates what the company describes as ‘battlefield proven Kevlar armour and aero-space grade aluminium technology’. Built by hand and 100% bespoke, Vita’s aluminium frame is made from aerospace grade material, making it stronger and importantly avoiding unnecessary weight and producing a super light wheelchair. Lead designer Mike Sheen, who joined RGK from the award-winning Dyson product design team explained: “Airtech upholstery allows superior positioning whilst the straight camber bar provides added rigidity so users can be sure their chair is designed to last. Exclusive design castor arm and low rise castor forks ensure minimum rolling resistance, maximum stability and great style.” Russel Simms, Commercial Director of RGK, added: “For a long time wheelchairs have been clunky and a hassle, something we at RGK are trying to change. Vita brings to life what we believe a wheelchair should be – light, strong and practical.” RGK has also recently unveiled a new wheelchair power assist device. The Smart Drive device has been specifically designed for active users, providing a boost of extra power to climb steep hills independently, without exerting any additional physical energy. The booster attaches to the back of daily-use wheelchairs and can be used for days between charges. Dan Sutton, UK Sales and Business

The new Vita boasts aerospace grade aluminium technology’

Development Manager, commented: “We are the only wheelchair manufacturer in the UK to distribute the Smart Drive. Customers can buy it directly through RGK, but we’re also selling this product through a number of dealers, who we’ve partnered with for this product. RGK can be contacted on 01543 687 680. The website is at

The new power assist device is being sold both directly and through dealers

Stylish wheelchair tray The new Trabasack Max includes a lightweight and sturdy tray surface built into one side, which sits on the lap with the cushioned bean bag inserts. The latest option sees an upgrade in internal capacity and can hold laptops, wallets, magazines and even clothing. The hand-luggage sizing makes the Trabasack Max ultimately portable, the smart briefcase style and lap tray make it ideal for business or leisure usage, and the option of trims and straps provide the perfect bag for travelling for pleasure. The internal compartment is lined with a deep, red satin and a choice of trims are available, with contemporary black or luxury Harris Tweed designs on offer, with the genuine Harris Tweed being handcrafted by authentic crofters in the Outer Hebrides. The lap tray bag also features

a number of additional internal organisational pockets and zip compartments, making accessing and utilising the items stored within even easier. Although the Trabasack Max has an increased internal capacity, the manufacturers say that it still remains lightweight and continues to carry the accessible features seen on previous models. They believe it to be the most stylish, inclusive and luxurious wheelchair tray alternative on the market. Call 0800 567 7812. The website is at




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The UK’s leading range of mobility products, since 1985

23/05/2013 15:35



30 years up for Unwin Unwin Safety Systems is the only manufacturer of wheelchair and wheelchair-occupant restraints to have attended every single Mobility Roadshow. According to the Celebrating 30 years: company, over the Unwin Safety Systems’ retro sweets, specially last 30 years Unwin’s produced as a Mobility stands have attracted Roadshow treat tens of thousands of visitors, including The Queen, Prince Andrew and the Duchess of Gloucester. At this year’s show the company introduced a new 5-metre electric winch which includes a soft-start system for wheelchair users’ comfort, acceleration and speed control, very quiet customer-friendly operation and a 300kg payload up to a gradient of 25%. Gerry O’Connor, Unwin’s Director of Sales and Marketing, said: ‘‘I’m very proud of the fact that we’re one of the few companies who’ve been to every single Mobility Roadshow.” Norman Unwin founded Unwin Safety Systems

in Somerset in 1956. Unwin was the first company in the world devoted to helping people with disabilities travel safely in vehicles. Unwin invented the world’s first wheelchair restraint and the first wheelchair-occupant restraint. In June 2013, Unwin formed a joint venture partnership with Sweden’s Autoadapt, which also has a long tradition of developing innovative improvements for safe, independent living for wheelchair users. For more information, call 01935 827740. The website is at

Safety Systems’ founders Norman and Jean Unwin with Håkan Sandberg and Peter Wahlsten of Autoadapt and Unwin’s Development Director Robert Unwin

Better Bidet The Better Bidet is a battery operated, affordable portable and travel friendly bidet with a light and compact design. Unlike plumbed bidets the Better Bidet needs no tradesmen to plumb or wire the unit before use. I allows the user to add emollients or approved medication to the reservoir of water. The manufacturers say that it will fit virtually any toilet and can be packed into a suitcase for trips away from home. There are riser seat attachments in three 3 sizes, 2” 4” and 6” and the Big John bariatric toilet seat can also have a bidet connection. For more information visit www.wesmedical. com

New Occupational Therapy zone to open at Naidex National 2014 i2i Events Group and the College of Occupational Therapists have announced a substantial extension to their partnership with the launch of a new dedicated zone for occupational therapists at Naidex National 2014. The exclusive new space for occupational therapists will be part of Naidex’s flagship event taking place from 29 April to 1 May at the NEC, Birmingham. For the first time at Naidex, a full College-led programme will take place in one location, including ‘meet the expert’ sessions, student-focused seminars and workshops with College staff. Experts from the UK’s professional body for occupational therapists will develop the content in collaboration with 2i Events Group to ensure it meets their professional standards. Julia Scott, Chief Executive of the College of Occupational


September 2013

Therapists, said: “We are always seeking ways to improve our services for members and we are delighted to be doing this through our partnership with i2i Events Group, the organisers of Naidex National with whom we have a longstanding relationship. Together, we will provide excellent CPD opportunities for our members at Naidex in 2014. She added, “We have worked with i2i and Naidex for many years and so this is a natural progression for our two organisations. We decided to have a stronger presence at Naidex National next year because of their track record in attracting occupational therapists to an annual event that is complementary to our own.” For more information about Naidex National go to www.


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Re-brand and new range for specialist supplier If you sell hoists, mattresses or a range of other products, they could have a Dartex product incorporated. The specialist coated fabrics supplier has recently made some interesting changes to the product range as well as introducing an innovative visual element to get the message across… With healthcare budgets stretched to the limit, companies are being faced with some tough questions, such as how they continue to offer reliable, quality products while minimising costs for the customer? That’s exactly the challenge that Dartex has faced up to recently and the result is the launch of a new product range from what is a long established brand. If you manufacture seating or positioning cushions, mattresses or hoists, the chances are you’ll know the name. For over 40 years, Dartex has led the market in the development of polyurethane (pu) coated fabrics designed to help prevent pressure ulcers and improve infection control. Over the decades, Dartex has supplied millions of metres of fabric to a global customer base

The Dartex name is wellknown by manufacturers selling a range of products

predominantly in the healthcare sector. Starting out as the first British transfer coater, today Dartex has manufacturing plants in the UK and USA, counts Stryker, ArjoHuntleigh, Hill-Rom, Invacare, Direct Healthcare, Kirton and Teasdale among its customers and stands alone as the only UK manufacturer of pu fabrics. In response to the “We were really looking to visually challenge of producing illustrate all the different applications cost-effective products, of Dartex fabrics in a fun and the company has just engaging way” launched what it is calling its new Care range. The Care launch follows a rebrand and heavy investment in the company which has seen two new customer service staff, a technical project manager and a dedicated marketing manager join Along with a new product the team. range, the company has David Ripley, managing director at Dartex developed a new brand image too

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told us: “We’re confident that like-for-like, Care products offer unmatched performance at a very competitive price. What’s more, our customers can rest assured that the Care range has been developed with the same quality focus as our other ranges and tested to the same rigorous standards.” The company has also been redefining the way it engages with the industry, from direct customers to healthcare providers. Following an extended period of consultation with medical device manufacturers and healthcare providers, Dartex has undergone a complete rebrand. This has resulted in a new website and the use of Playmobil characters to communicate the benefits of their highly technical fabrics. Zane Powers, marketing manager at Dartex explained more about the changes: “One of the things that was clear from the feedback we received from the medical device manufacturers we spoke to, as well as healthcare providers, was how mechanical and dry information within the industry was. That’s why we contacted Playmobil, a provider of lego-type characters based around a variety of themes. Once we found the healthcarethemed characters we were looking for, they

Conscious that the products they sell can sometimes be seen to be ‘dry’, the company has taken the interesting step of using characters for additional visual impact

were sent to a design agency for a photo-shoot. We were really looking to visually illustrate all the different applications of Dartex fabrics in a fun and engaging way and were very pleased with the unique outcome.” He added: “The use of the Playmobil characters is in line with our history of breaking the mould and taking innovative approaches to challenges “If you manufacture seating or and the feedback we’ve positioning cushions, mattresses or had from our website hoists, the chances are you’ll know visitors has been very the name” positive.” As part of the Care launch, Dartex is offering an introductory offer on all orders placed by 30 September 2013 which includes an introductory early order price from £3.00 per metre, no minimum order quantity and with the standard Care blue held in stock for speedy despatch. Dartex will be exhibiting at Trade Days next year. To find out more about the Care launch, call 0115 983 7676 or visit the website at www.

New recruits at Repose Kevin Critchlow has been appointed at the new senior consultant for Repose. He brings 10 years of specialist seating and health related expertise having held a similar role with Kirton Healthcare. He has in-depth knowledge of specialist seating, challenging behaviour furniture, wall and floor padding for de-escalation and seclusion rooms.

Rachel Panter has been appointed as the new client manager for the company. She is an experienced client account manager and will now assist in looking after internal client accounts, ensuring that their marketing, sales and informational expectations are being met. The website for Repose is at

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New man at motion furniture component company CIARCIAR SpA, manufacturers and designers motion furniture components has named Francesco De Santis as the new Head of Sales and Marketing. Mr. De Santis, who had been Sales & Marketing Manager EMEA at Leggett & Platt Home Furniture Components, is to spearhead CIAR’s sales marketing activities and contribute to the development of overall business strategy. “The creation of this new role further strengthens our ability to meet the needs of our customers,” commented Egidio Marcantoni, CEO & Founder CIAR SpA. “Francesco deSantis has a comprehensive understanding of motion furniture components sales and marketing which will greatly benefit CIAR, our sales network, and our clients.” Before joining CIAR, Mr. De Santis was responsible for Leggett & Platts EMEA territories,supporting and developing a network of agents, distributors and key accounts.Previously, De Santis had five years with the Natuzzi group where he gained experience in research and development and buying. CIAR Spa is Italy’s leading designer and manufacturer of motion seating components including actuator systems for recline chairs and sofas, rise and recline chairs, beds, motion seating mechanisms, vibro and shiatsu massage systems and electric control systems. The contact for the UK is Tim Hudson who can be contacted on 07532 464678.

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On The Website Mobile Lifts range

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The Oxford Classic range of mobile lifts from Joerns is ideally suited to homecare and nursing home environments. The Mini, Midi, Major and Maxi incorporate Oxford’s new and exclusive Smart Monitor - a state-of-theart, on-board diagnostic control system, providing invaluable operational data via the integrated LCD display. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0844 811 1158

The Stargazer from Repose Furniture is a solution to short term bed provision with deeper foam cushions than any other ready bed available. There is a simple two step movement to quickly transform the chair into a bed with fully washable, bleach cleanable, anti-MRSA vinyl upholstery. It is available in a range of colours and has built in castors for ease of movement for cleaning purposes. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0844 7766001

New Stand-aid Hoist The versatile Glide M200 from Gainsborough Baths has been ergonomically designed to facilitate standing, seated transfers and assisted toileting for patients with some weight-bearing ability. The M200 also incorporates the intelligent diagnostics system. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0800 542 9194

New cushion range from Ottobock Ottobock has launched two new ranges of cushions for use with wheelchairs. The Terra and the Aerial ranges are designed to offer comfort and durability for wheelchair users and uses pioneering new foam technology. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 01784 744 927

New bidet seats from AKW AKW has extended its high-end portfolio of adapted bathroom products to include a new range of stylish and affordable bidet seats. The USpa bidet seats have been designed to be easily retro-fitted to existing toilet pans. Key features of the range include soft-close seats, continuous water heating, an intelligent energy-saving function and a touch-activated on-off sensor. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0800 0787 188

The new Prism Straight Stairlift The Prism Straight Stairlift has been developed specifically for straight staircases without curves or bends and has been ergonomically designed to ensure it is simple and easy to operate. The maximum user weight capacity for the Prism Straight Stairlift is 120Kg (19st) For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0844 980 2260

The new Prism Curved Stairlift The Prism Curved Stairlift has been developed specifically for a range of curved staircases, with a revolutionary ergonomically designed chair. The maximum user weight capacity for the Prism Straight Stairlift is 160Kg (25st). For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0844 980 2260

New option for prescription portal Assistive Partner has introduced a new innovation to the UNIQUS Prescription Portal. It now has a mobile “Lite-Site” option. The company says that it is just as secure, using

the same website, passwords and user ID – just improved functionality to help people on the move. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 0844 335 6791

7 ft Telescopic Channel Ramp This compact, lightweight and durable Telescopic Channel Ramp from Aidapt is ideal for providing access to houses and cars for wheelchairs, scooters, walkers and rollators. The extending ramp is constructed from lightweight, rust-free aluminium and is supplied with an easy-carry bag, making the ramp extremely portable and convenient to store. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 01744 745020

Introducing The Marello A Stunning Curvaceous Recliner

Hybrid High Easy Sling Silvalea has introduced a new Hybrid High Easy Replacement Sling with Clip which has fixings suitable for use with Stud Fixing Spreader Bars. The sling allows arms to be on the outside if required and helps to achieve a more upright pick up position. For more details visit the THIIS website or call 01626 332218

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OFT decision on scooters and competition law The OFT has issued a decision finding that Roma Medical Aids Limited (Roma), a manufacturer of mobility scooters based in Bridgend, Wales, and some of its online retailers, breached competition law. The OFT found Roma entered into arrangements with seven UK-wide online retailers which prevented them from selling Roma-branded mobility scooters online and from advertising their prices online. The OFT found that these practices limited consumers’ choice and obstructed their ability to compare prices and get value for money. The decision relates to Roma and the following UK-wide online retailers: Careco (UK) Limited (formerly Discount Mobility Direct Limited), Discount Mobility Plus Limited/Rutland Mobility Limited, Discount Mobility Shop Limited/Mobility Abroad Limited, GBL Wheelchair Services Limited, Mobility Independence Limited, MT Mobility Limited/Hooplah Limited and Protec Mobility Trading Limited. Certain of those retailers also operate physical retail shops. The OFT found these practices occurred over various periods in relation to different retailers between 2011 and 2012 and prevented, restricted or distorted competition in the supply of mobility scooters in the UK. The OFT has directed the parties to bring the arrangements to an end (where this has not already happened) and to refrain from entering into the same or similar arrangements in the future. Today’s announcement brings this investigation to a conclusion. Cavendish Elithorn, OFT Senior Director, Goods and Consumer Group, said: “Mobility scooters by definition tend to be sold to vulnerable consumers who may have trouble visiting a number of stores. Our 2011 market study into mobility aids found that mobility scooters in general can vary in price by over £1000 for the identical product and we have even seen price differences of £3000. It is therefore vitally important that consumers can use all the advantages of the internet to get a good price on this essential product and that innovative

and efficient companies should not be prevented from winning new customers. This competition investigation followed an earlier market study into the sector and sends a clear message to business that we will follow up with enforcement action where credible evidence is found or provided.” The Chapter I prohibition of the Competition Act “Mobility scooters by definition tend 1998 (CA98) prohibits, to be sold to vulnerable consumers” among other matters, agreements and concerted practices between undertakings that have the object or effect of preventing, restricting or distorting competition in the UK or a part of it and which may affect trade in the UK or a part of it. Section 39(3) of the CA98 provides that a party to a ‘small agreement’ (and which is not a price fixing agreement) is immune from financial penalties for an infringement of the Chapter I prohibition. A ‘small agreement’ is “Our 2011 market study into mobility an agreement between aids found that mobility scooters undertakings whose in general can vary in price by over combined turnover did not £1000 for the identical product and exceed £20 million in the business year ending in the we have even seen price differences of £3000” calendar year preceding the one during which the infringement occurred. The OFT has reviewed the turnover of Roma and each of the seven retailers involved in the infringement in the calendar years 2011 and 2012 and has found that they all benefit from this immunity from penalties. The OFT has stated that it welcomed the constructive cooperation of the parties throughout its investigation. The OFT’s market study estimated that the value of the UK mobility aids sector in 2011 was between £430 million and £510 million.

Help from Osprey Osprey Healthcare has donated £1000.00 to help fund a defibrillator for Sacred Heart Catholic School in Wigan. The children made a heart shape out of card, coloured it in and wrote a name of someone who was close to them and donated £1 per heart. The children raised £450 but


September 2013

needed a further £1000 to be able to secure a defibrillator unit. The unit, which will be supplied in the next few weeks, will come with a training package for up to eight people. Paul King, Director of Osprey Healthcare said: “We were more than happy to help with this vital peace of life saving equipment.”


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Going interactive If you’re not thinking digitally and keeping tabs on your online presence these days, then it seems that you could be letting your competition gain ground on you. Website retailer Manage at Home spends a good deal of time thinking about how it can connect with customers… More and more over 50’s are now using the internet and social media channels to connect with their family and friends online. This was highlighted in figures released in 2012 by the Office of National Statistics, in which 66% of people aged 55-64 said their reason for using the internet was to find information about goods and services, while additional data indicates that internet shopping is continuing to grow among the 55+ age group. This aspect of using the web to browse for products and read reviews is also becoming evident in the world of independent living, which is why website retailer Manage at Home decided to reach out to this audience of silver surfers through an innovative method of online communication. Rather than sending out offline printed brochures, the company chose to connect with this emerging digital audience by creating an online mobility aid brochure, which highlighted the main benefits of mobility aids for inside and outside the home. The brochure, ‘The essential guide to domestic mobility and disability aids’ is segmented into individual rooms and targeted towards disabled and elderly people who need help and support around the home. Its aim was to partly reach out to the one in four internet users who are now said to be over 40 and interacting with online technology more frequently, as recently reported in the Daily Mail. Matthew Ward, Business Manager at Manage at Home told us: “We live in an increasingly digital world and many older adults are now beginning to utilise the potential of this technology, namely being better connected, less lonely and better educated. We saw huge potential in this emerging market and sought to find a method that would take advantage of this opportunity and offer users real helpful insights.” The method of communication Manage at Home settled on was the interactive brochure, in which red spots were used to highlight areas

0 52

The amount of coverage you’ll get in the magazine if you never send us any

September 2013

Matthew Ward says there

inside and outside the home where mobility is huge potential in what is an emerging market aids could potentially prove a helpful addition. with more and more Part of the reason for this chosen method of elderly people buying online communication was addressing recent concerns raised by Age UK about the ‘digital exclusion’ that is dividing older generations and leading to them paying more for utilities and other commodities because they struggle online. Matthew explained: “We settled on this style and format as we thought it would simplify “Many older adults are now beginning the process of the user to utilise the potential of this identifying areas around technology” the home where mobility aids could improve their health, safety and independence; for example, preventing falls in the bathroom by installing grab rails, improving safety in the kitchen by utilising knob turners, and improving comfort in the living room through the inclusion of overchair tables.” He added: “In an age where technology is no longer an optional extra, it was vital that we made sure the guide was easy to use and accessible.” According to Matthew, this was also a key feature “In an age where technology is no of Manage at Home’s longer an optional extra, it was vital recently re-launched that we made sure the guide was website, in which features easy to use and accessible” such as improved options in text sizes from normal to large and a simplified theme were key to providing an improved shopping experience. He says that the addition of live chat on the site has also proved a valuable addition: “Through this tool our visitors are able to ask our team

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questions and receive responses in real-time. We see this as a way of helping customers to make informed decisions on their product requirements in a friendly, quick and easy online environment, helping elderly users to secure lower prices for utilities online. This accessible outlook was also essential to our development of the interactive guide and we believe this has shone through in the results.” Matthew reports that the reaction to the guide has been very positive. “The response to the interactive guide has been positive in the independent living sector and further afield, being featured in such resources as Disabled Motoring UK and Elixir Magazine. It also received coverage in the social media channels, having been promoted by well-known brands and charities such as Carers Trust (@CarersTweets) among their followers. The feedback from disabled,

The online brochure

has been received very elderly and caregiver users of the interactive positively guide also indicates that this area holds huge potential for future digital and online technology innovations.” “We are finding that the independent living “We are finding that the independent audience is starting to take living audience is starting to take notice of digital campaigns notice of digital campaigns more and more and more” Matthew more” added. “Our previous attempts at engaging this emerging audience through informative Infographics and collaborations with other reputable online resources have been positive, and we will continue to diversify into this market through future innovations.” The website is at


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Association Update Here’s an update from the BHTA, with details of some of the latest initiatives from the trade association... BHTA’s Splendid Summer BHTA has seen a number of new companies joining over the past few weeks. There have been a wide range of companies joining - large, medium and small businesses with well-established names and brand new start-ups. The joining companies include Kirton Healthcare, Ashdown Mobility, MTM Mobility, Molten Rock, Renray Healthcare, Comfortex, Between the Sheets and Byw Bywyd (Living Life). They say they’ve joined because of the BHTA Code of Practice, members’ access to information and advice as well as the networking opportunities.

Barcoding and Health Hub innovation A new central barcode database has been launched which provide an essential resource. It provides one central point for manufacturers to upload their product barcodes and for their customers to download them, making equipment and consumables easy to scan and identify for the end user. This includes both NHS England and the representative bodies in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. The online database provides easy, free of charge access for all those in the public sector requiring access to product information. The Health Hub is at

Advantage scheme for members launches BHTA has launched a new package of exclusive discounts and benefits for members, offering them even more value for their subscription. Members can save on office supplies, IT training, business landline/mobile calls and broadband, car hire and servicing, helping to control their costs and boost their business. There’s also scope to save outside work, with discounts on a wide range of products from big brands including Marks & Spencer, Avis, Pizza Express, Thomas Cook, B&Q and Currys/PC World.

Launch of Consumer Codes Approval Scheme BHTA is one of the first holders of a Trading Standards Institute (TSI) Approved Consumer Code. The Consumer Code scheme had its public launch in June, where it was given the Government’s official backing by Consumer Minister Jo Swinson, who said it would boost consumer confidence and encourage economic growth. TSI’s new role in working with Code members means a new local emphasis and a greater engagement with business, compared to the previous OFT regime. Citizens Advice Service will also take a more direct role in advising consumers and be able to direct purchasers towards trusted traders. As well as finding members on the BHTA website, consumers can also search for a member of an approved code at This means higher profile for a members and easier access to trusted traders for consumers.

Annual Conference

Profile enhancing option

Vince Cable MP, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills is the keynote speaker at the BHTA Conference on 3 October. As well as delivering the keynote speech, Dr Cable will also be part of the popular “Question Time” panel, giving delgates the chance to put questions to him directly. Full details and booking forms are available at www.

BHTA members can now enhance their listing on the BHTA website by adding a company logo. BHTA members can email a logo to To find out more about the profile through the Trading Standards Institute, more benefits from BHTA Advantage and more promotional opportunities with BHTA Engage, call Stephen Rigg on 020 7702 2141.


Developing business under the OT umbrella From retailing to medico-legal services, Veronica Downing’s occupational therapy business covers a rapidly increasing range of activities, as THIIS discovers…. In May 2013, after six years selling disability aids and equipment from its assessment centre situated in a barn in the Suffolk countryside, Veronica Downing Associates opened a new town centre retail store. Veronica is an Occupational Therapist and she told us how she had developed her business to the stage where the new retail outlet seemed like a natural step. “I qualified in 1976” she told us, “and I worked with the NHS and Social Services in a wide range of different settings up until 1994. I did a degree in psychology with the Open University and that whetted my appetite to extend my areas of knowledge and interest. At the time, I was working in the field of learning disabilities and getting more and more disillusioned with the way the NHS was running things. When you have been working in an organisation for a long while and you see the wheel being re-invented several times over, then you start to ask yourself what you can do that is different.” That ‘something different’ turned out to be expert witness work. “Someone suggested to me that I might enjoy that type of work. I had my degree, I was happy writing detailed reports and because I love Occupational Therapy and am very passionate about my profession, I decided to investigate medico-legal work.” Veronica started writing expert witness reports in October 1994. “I was working part time and I had a young family as well. The business began to grow and I was doing a little bit of private work and also getting asked by social services to undertake some assessments when they had a backlog or an under-spend and needed some help. I was also getting asked by charitable organisations to undertake assessments for grants and so my practice was growing.” It was a move to a new home that prompted the development of the assessment centre. “In 2002 we moved to north east Suffolk after buying a small farm with outbuildings. It included a barn which was quite run down and needed a lot of work doing to it. We bought it with the intention




that the barn was going to provide a lovely facility to work from.” A couple of years and £300,000 later, the barn was converted to provide the facilities to use for occupational therapy Veronica (right) with a assessments, kitted out with a ceiling track hoist client in the Independent Living Centre and specialist equipment in the bedroom, an accessible shower and bath and a wheelchair accessible kitchen. “We also went into retailing equipment too at that point so that if people came to me for occupational therapy advice I was also in a position to recommend products.” “I’m not a retailer by nature,” she comments. “As an Occupational Therapist I am used to “When you have been working in an advising on equipment, organisation for a long while and and when I worked for you see the wheel being re-invented social services there were several times over, then you start to always constraints over ask yourself what you can do that is what you could actually different” issue to meet people’s needs. And, as everyone is aware, over time the constraints on the statutory services have increased. There is less and less choice and it is cost driven. As an Occupational Therapist I am looking to offer a bespoke advice service and I think it reached a stage in the NHS and with statutory services that I couldn’t provide that because I was always constrained by time, money and other criteria.” It’s a big step from “I’m not a retailer by nature” advising people about equipment and being able to offer products free of charge to actually taking money from a customer, and I wondered how Veronica had adapted to that. “Yes, that was one of the difficulties for me, feeling a bit guilty about taking money from people. Getting my head around buying in a piece of equipment for a certain price and selling it at

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September 2013

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another to actually make a profit took a while, and I always advise people if a product might be available through statutory services, particularly if they only need something in the short term.” Using a small farm as a location for retail means that you’re unlikely to see a huge amount of passing trade of course, but Veronica says that the business is seeing more and more customers as time goes on. “The footfall has increased,” she confirmed. “We are in a very rural area with a high elderly population and, as in many places; people are having long waits for appointments and equipment. When you’re elderly and being told that you have to wait months for an assessment, the waiting time alone could well be a large percentage of the time that you have left. It’s very important that people can get timely advice so that they can optimise their quality of life for as long as possible, so maybe it’s not surprising that services such as those we offer are becoming more visible around the UK and people are looking to take advantage of them.” Veronica says that the retail side of the business in her assessment centre had been steadily growing for six years, and that bearing in mind where the centre is and the effort that some customers had to make to get there, signs were very encouraging. So encouraging in fact that when high street retail premises became available in the nearby market town, she decided that the time was right to take the next step and really fly the retail flag. “A shop became available in the centre of Halesworth, opposite the library and with level threshold access, a large display window and plenty of space inside, so we decided to go for it. We took the plunge and set up Rehability.” It means that the business now has two different facilities, providing two different services. “The barn will continue as the assessment facility and it’s where we also run the Expert Witness and Occupational Therapy services from. The facilities are still there to do more complex needs assessments and we now have the space to run things like group meetings, training sessions, and other events in the barn. To assist with that I have a part-time Occupational Therapist who has recently joined us.” Manager of the retail store Rehability is Amy Wilks. “Amy joined us nine months ago to work with us in the barn, but we discovered that she has a real flair for retail,” says Veronica. Amy is joined by a further sales assistant and a technician whose job it is to service wheelchairs and mobility scooters. Commenting on the structure of the company and the areas in which it is active, Veronica points out that she now has a foot in several camps, and it is the diversification of her business that has provided her with the confidence to develop




September 2013


A new new state stat A art rollator rollator art

The new retail outlet

the retail division, as she explains: “I think that for a lot of Occupational Therapists, going into retail is quite a scary leap to make. My company has grown slowly and organically over time and it is the medico-legal work that’s underpinned everything. That has been the most successful sector in terms of turnover and it has provided us with “That was one of the difficulties for the financial resources to me, feeling a bit guilty about taking invest in other areas.” money from people” Her occupational therapy background is something that Veronica intends to put to good use in the new shop. “We have one session a week when a qualified Occupational Therapist is at Rehability to provide a drop-in clinic. This means that if people have queries or are having difficulties at home, then we can advise. A lot of people are reluctant to use private Occupational Therapists for assessments for home visits. I think it’s the question of payment. “I think that for a lot of Occupational There is still a reluctance Therapists, going into retail is quite a to pay Occupational scary leap to make” Therapists. People will pay for a massage, they will buy private physiotherapy and go to the Chiropractor, but there is a still a reluctance to pay someone like an OT. We’ve got a long way to go before occupational therapy services are seen as a commodity that people are prepared to buy-in. Hopefully with the personalisation agenda that is being promoted with individual budgets, people will increasingly understand the benefits of buying private advice.” “I think that offering the breadth of Being involved in services that we do makes us a first” commercial retailing, she Easyto tooperate operate •• Easy can understand how retailers get frustrated Self-lockingfold fold •• Self-locking about the pressures that come from internet Uniqueheight heightad a •• Unique sales. “It’s a learning curve for us and I expect that well-established retailers know this only Uniquestability stability •• Unique too well, but people test you all the time if they •• Excellent Excellentdesign design think they can buy a product cheaper on the

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internet. However, we also now know that people constantly come back for you to provide more assistance and there are always issues to be sorted. Clearly there needs to be a margin that enables you to do things properly.” And on pricing, she has this to say: “I still think that some items are overpriced, but for others there is a justification. If you have a complex piece of equipment, then after-sales service has to be built into the margin. You have to be realistic about the cost of running a retail business, and the same goes for private practice. Most Occupational Therapists don’t appreciate that running the office, employing administration staff and all the unpaid time that it takes to operate a business has to be taken into account. As I said, it’s a learning experience and OTs do find that scary.” With such a range of services on offer, Veronica believes her company is in a unique position. “I think that offering the breadth of services that we do makes us a first. I don’t know of any other Occupational Therapy company that offers our wide umbrella of activities, from retail and equipment servicing through to occupational therapy assessments and medico-legal work.” As readers will be aware, medico-legal work has grown considerably over the past few years and, as Veronica explains, the sums involved have increased considerably too. “Over time, the levels of settlement have gone up and the cases that I work with tend to be the most complex ones. I do a lot of assessments for children with cerebral palsy and with complex trauma, so we are talking serious money. For the clinical negligence cases we are now seeing settlements of several millions of pounds, largely due to the increasing cost of care and the fact that people are now living longer.” She added: “Settlements are sometimes made as a lump sum to cater for buying a property to adapt, the adapted transport and the equipment, as well as setting up a care package and engaging therapists. Then there will be annual payments to cover the on-going costs, particularly

where life expectancy is not necessarily known. One case that I worked on involved a car accident, with spinal injuries to an elderly client who is still alive now, even though at the time of the settlement in the late 1990’s, the expectation was that he would live no more than a couple of years. Here we are, fifteen years later and he is still with us, so the money that was paid then no longer covers his costs.” “There are also a large number of Veronica with Store fast-track claims that manager Amy Wilks don’t actually come to requiring an assessment by an Occupational Therapist or other expert,” she explains. “A few years ago the figure that was being talked about for compensation claims by the NHS was some £20 billion. But, if you think that an appropriate sum for a young child might range from perhaps £5m to as much as £7.5m, then you can see that there are huge sums involved. There’s no doubt that we now have a “An appropriate sum for a young child therapy and care industry might range from perhaps £5m to as that is compensationmuch as £7.5m” led. However, we also have to understand that for children or adults who cannot blame anyone for a genetic condition and who have to rely on statutory provision, that can be pretty miserable.” You can get in touch with Veronica Downing Associates on 01986 875435 or visit the website at

New website for Gainsborough Gainsborough Specialist Bathing has launched a new interactive website to coincide with its newly updated corporate identity. The website has been totally redesigned so it is more user-friendly and now offers visitors more detailed information on its products. Within the newly designed product pages, comprehensive details are provided highlighting individual bath features, technical specifications as well as product videos that show the products in use. Example room layouts and CAD drawings are available as downloads to fully support the needs of contractors, specifiers and architects. The considerately designed home page also includes links to the latest news, details on its Aspect accessible bathroom design service


September 2013

and information regarding new products initiatives. website further enhanced the introduction an innovative Product Selector which delivers a simple and easy to use method visitors to choose the right bath individual needs. The new Gainsborough website is live at

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Internal Mobility Engineer

Product Specialist – North accora ltd is a fast growing and progressive organisation based in the south East supplying care equipment across the uK. Continued growth has provided a vacancy for a seating assessor based in the Midlands/north of the country. this exciting and varied role involves carrying out home visits, typically with an occupational therapist to demonstrate riser recliner and specialist chairs. accora is a highly values driven organisation and the ideal candidate will live and respect our values, have a positive and cando attitude, be proactive and accountable, be a team player and have excellent interpersonal skills. this role includes manual handling and the candidate must be able to carry out on-site demonstrations. it also involves a lot of driving and possibly staying away overnight. a company van, laptop, and phone etc. will be provided. Previous industry and product experience are not essential. to enquire in confidence, please contact:

CareCo UK Ltd are seeking a confident internal engineer with mobility scooter, rise recliner, power chair and wheelchair knowledge to head up our team and aid our sales department in the wide range of products we sell to the health and care market. You will report directly to the sales manager and work closely with our existing sales team. The internal mobility engineer is the first line contact, responding to existing customer requirements, dealing with products faults, arranging service call outs and warranty claims to be made, as well as seeking new opportunities for the company. Duties include: • Calling customers with queries • Technically specifying against customer issues • Internal support for current sales team • Handling warranty and technical calls from existing customers • General customer service duties • Dealing with warranty issues and returns with suppliers Applicants should have experience in the mobility environment and appropriate technical knowledge, you will need to demonstrate a positive and proactive approach, be computer literate with an excellent telephone manner. The role is based in Brentwood, Essex. Interested parties should send a CV with covering letter to

Thinking of using THIIS to recruit new team members? “Simplyhealth has been successful in recruiting two sales roles from adverts carried in THIIS magazine, website and bulletin. We have found it to be a well targeted and cost effective channel and will be including it in our future recruitment plans.” Kevin Snowball, Managing Director Independent Living, Simplyhealth “I have been very pleased with the response to our recent advert on the website and magazine. It has superseded any of the other channels we have tried in the past and we will certainly use THIIS as the first port of call next time.” Tim Dines, Chunc Posture & Mobility

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Copper used in battle against bugs

According to the research copper could be the key in the

fight against infection New research from the University of Southampton shows that copper and copper alloys will rapidly destroy norovirus – the highly-infectious sickness bug that can spread extremely rapidly in a care home environment.

Worldwide, norovirus is responsible for more than 267 million cases of acute gastroenteritis every year. There is no specific treatment or vaccine, and outbreaks regularly shut down hospital wards and care homes, requiring expensive deep-cleaning, incurring additional treatment costs and resulting in lost man days when staff are infected. In a recent presentation, Professor Bill Keevil, Chair in Environmental Healthcare at the University of Southampton stated norovirus was rapidly destroyed on copper and its alloys, with those containing more than 60% copper proving particularly efficacious. The contamination model

Professor Bill Keevil and Sarah Warnes studying copper in a University of Southampton laboratory

used was designed to simulate fingertip-touch contamination of surfaces. He explained: “Copper alloy surfaces can be employed in high-risk areas such as cruise ships and care homes, where norovirus outbreaks are “Copper surfaces, like door handles hard to control because infected people can’t and taps, can disrupt the cycle and help but contaminate lower the risk of outbreaks” the environment. Copper surfaces, like door handles and taps, can disrupt the cycle and lower the risk of outbreaks.”

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Website News Items Telemonitoring Nurse is a Winner Hilary Thompson, a stroke specialist nurse from Southern Health and Social Care Trust in Northern Ireland is the proud winner of the TF3 sponsored Royal College of Nursing Award for “Transforming Care with Technology” at the Nurse of the Year Awards. The Transforming Care with Technology Award rewards quality and excellence in the use of telemonitoring and telehealth to improve care for patients. Care support to cost London £877 million by 2019 A report from London Councils warns that the capital’s local authorities face additional costs of £877 million by 2019/20 in order to deliver the proposed changes to adult social care funding contained in the Care Bill. The cost across England is likely to be around £6 billion. The London figure is estimated as a result of councils stepping in when a lifetime limit on care costs of £72,000 is reached, along with a rise in the means testing threshold from £23,250 currently to £118,000 in April 2016. Call monitoring solution for Carewatch Carewatch (Bexley), part of the Carewatch network, a leading national provider of care and support to people in their own homes, has rolled-out Advanced Health & Care’s (Advanced) electronic call monitoring solution, iConnect, to its 71 employees. iConnect delivers real-time task lists and service user data to care workers via their mobile phones, recording actual arrival and departure times using NFC technology. Integrating services to meet the needs of older people Joining up health and social care will allow people to live at home and remain independent for longer, relieving pressure on acute services, according to Welsh Government plans. With people living longer than ever before, but with a rise in chronic conditions, trends will be for an increased demand for acute and community care services for older people with complex needs in Wales. Health Minister Mark Drakeford and Gwenda Thomas, Deputy Minister for Social Services, issued a joint statement outlining plans to move resources to community care with a commitment to coordinate health and social care. Insect limb research the key for prosthetic limbs Neurobiologists from the University of Leicester have shown that insect limbs can move without muscles – a finding that may provide engineers with new ways to improve the control of robotic and prosthetic limbs. Their work helps to explain how insects control their movements using a close interplay of neuronal control and ‘clever biomechanical tricks,’ says lead researcher Dr Tom Matheson, a Reader in Neurobiology at the University of Leicester.

Green light for independent living homes Building projects up and down the country have been given the green light to start producing homes that will support older and disabled people to live independently for as long as possible, Care and Support Minister Norman Lamb has announced. Last year the government asked local authorities to bid for a share of £300 million to boost the supported housing market. The Department of Health has now allocated funding to build 3,544 new homes. As part of the first phase of the scheme, the Department will now issue £92 million of this fund to the Homes and Communities Agency, which will work with 86 successful agencies to build 2,875 new homes across the country. £50 million fund supports dementia Over a hundred hospitals and care homes across England have been awarded a share of a £50million fund to create pioneering care environments designed with the needs of people with dementia in mind. Guy’s and St Thomas’ were selected to receive £955,490 to fund their project ‘Designing the Dementia Journey’ – a holistic approach to the environment for people with dementia, which will support the hospital’s existing care provision for dementia patients. Livability appoints new Chief Executive National disability charity Livability has appointed Dave Webber as its new Chief Executive. Livability is the largest Christian disability charity in the UK and a specialist provider of services including residential care, educational facilities, holiday accommodation, brain injury rehabilitation and care within the community. Dave has been the charity’s Interim Chief Executive since the summer of 2012 and was previously Livability’s Director of Operations. Stannah survey reveals pensioner worries Government plans to limit the amount the elderly have to pay towards their own social care at £75,000 are “unfair”, new research of Britain’s retirees shows. The proposed cap was suggested earlier this year as a way of preventing the elderly from having to sell their homes to fund their care. But in fact the research shows that of those who think the cap is unfair, 70% want income taxes to go up instead, in order to make up the shortfall. The Stannah Silver Census, commissioned by British manufacturer Stannah, questioned 1,000 adults over 65 to provide a voice for an oft-overlooked segment of British society. Sight loss advance Engineers used to designing state of the art instruments for ground and space based telescopes are now applying their expertise to the development of a diagnostic test for the developed world’s most common form of sight loss in adults, Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD).

See all the latest at

Retailer goes exclusive Back in the ‘olden days’ in our marketplace, when there were less than 50 showroom based companies selling mobility equipment and only a handful of suppliers, the notion of ‘exclusivity’ was very much part of the game-plan for some retailers and manufacturers. A retailer (know n as a dealer in those days) would choose to supply just Sunrise Medical or Everest & Jennings or Vessa products and would receive better deals for doing so. As more and more suppliers appeared and more and more retailers opened showrooms, the idea for the retailer of focussing on just one range of products and for the manufacturer to supply just one retailer in a region became less of an option for both parties. We were therefore interested in a news item that we received recently which broke the news that one retailer has taken the decision to ‘go exclusive’ for a range of products. The retailer is Herne Bay Mobility and the supplier is Karma Mobility. David Aldridge of Herne Bay Mobility explained that the company now only stocks Karma wheelchairs and powerchairs. “From the inexpensive, lightweight Bluebird to the more powerful and bestselling Ergo Lite 2, we now only stock Karma wheelchairs and powerchairs.” He added: “We decided to develop into a Karma-only retailer due to its excellent service, speed of delivery and quality of product. Our sales of Karma products have increased year on year; in fact, just in the first half of this year, we sold more Karma wheelchairs and powerchairs than in the whole of 2012.” Having been in business since 2008, the company has stocked Karma products for five out of the six years and the increased sales this year made the decision to switch an easy one for David and the team as he told us: “Superb is the only way to describe the range of Karma products. We like them and more importantly our customers like them. The Bluebird filled the gap for a lightweight inexpensive well build occasional

Herne Bay Mobility like Karma products so much that they are concentrating on that range in the future

use wheelchair, whilst the Dove and Ergo Lite 2 are our best sellers.” Karma Mobility has been supplying products in the UK for 14 years now and David speaks highly of the company: “We only have good things to say about Karma. Mark and the team there are extremely professional and the organisation designs brilliant products which we and our customers love.” Mark Duffield, General Manager of Karma Mobility, “Our sales of Karma products have increased year on year; in fact, just in told us: “We are delighted the first half of this year, we sold more that Herne Bay Mobility has decided to focus solely Karma wheelchairs and powerchairs on Karma products. We than in the whole of 2012” will, as with all our retailers, continue to provide the same high level of service and support to David and the team at Herne Bay that we have always done.” For more information about Karma Mobility and its products, please visit www.karmamobility. or call 0845 630 3436.

Stairlifts 0844 225 3121 | Moving & Handling / Bathing Solutions 0845 271 1107 | Mobility 0845 0745 945 |


Points of view

Points of view Got a point of view that you think the trade would be interesting in reading about? Anyone can join our ‘point of viewers’ so why not send us your contribution. Email

The number thirteen seems to be prevalent – and important By Julian Cobbledick of Assistive Partner As I am writing this Points of View item, there is less than a quarter of the 13th year of this present century left. Put another way, one hundred and thirteen days until Christmas day. This time last year, the BHTA held their annual conference. (That took place on the 26th – two thirteens!!). A worthwhile day out, featuring good speakers and excellent networking. The session on the benefits of barcoding featured slide headers that simply said “Healthcare 2013 – year of change”. And a standard GS1 barcode that uniquely identifies a traded item is called a GTIN13....(that stands for Global Trade Identification Number). That’s a lot of coincidence... Add to that, the fact that there were thirteen delegates who attended the most recent BHTA barcode workshop, and the fact that Assistive Partner completed the development of the recently launched BHTA website www. during the thirteenth hour on the thirteenth day of May 2013 and you have a few too many repetitions of that number thirteen to ignore. So, ignore this at your peril... As I write this, I have just become involved (on behalf of BHTA) in their dialogue with the National Procurement Agency, who are working closely with the Department of Health. Their objective (I think) is to get everything that’s purchased by the two key DH sectors (NHS and Social Services) that handle equipment; carries a valid barcode. They (the DoH) are working on more guidance. As you may be aware, the same “improvements” team have also been working on a revision to the NHS Conditions of Contract for the Supply of Goods which is also expected to be published in August - this will definitely include a requirement around GS1 barcoding. This “improvements” team has gone on record

as stating “the BHTA/GS1 guidance document [produced by a group of sixteen BHTA members, put into final draft on September 13th 2012 and launched at the 2012 BHTA conference] is “If any organisation supplying very helpful. The BHTA “things” to either NHS or Social intend to show that the Services avoids barcoding their industry will continue to support the DoH efforts “stuff” and publishing those barcodes to get barcodes in place onto the new BHTA site this year... during........2013. I think it could be in dangerous I am thinking that the waters.” time for any procrastination is over... If any organisation supplying “things” to either NHS or Social Services avoids barcoding their “stuff” and publishing those barcodes onto the new BHTA site this year (2013)... I think it could be in dangerous waters. End note: there were once thirteen thriving British motorcycle makers.

About Julian Julian has been a Director of Assistive Partner Limited since April 2007. He describes his present company as the leading healthcare equipment software provider. Their cloud-based software applications manage barcode, inventory & logistics management, CRM, PoS and much more. Their software is in use in the UK, Ireland, Australia and the USA. His early career training and experience was in the food industry and his mid-career was spent in the furniture and building supply field. Julian has chaired a number of industry think tanks and he currently acts as Chairman of the newly formed ATP Society and has previously been Chairman and subsequently President of the British Healthcare Trades Association (BHTA).

Got something to say? Then we’d love to hear from you. If you have a point of view then simply send us a short item and we’ll include it in a future issue of the magazine. Just email to


September 2013


Points of view DIY SOS By Kate Sheehan of The OT Practice I am not a regular viewer of DIY SOS but a friend told me I should watch a recent episode on iplayer. It was a very emotional show about a young man with Motor Neurone Disease (MND). He had a wife and three girls and lived in North London in a traditional Victorian terrace house. They came across as a close-knit family with an extended network of friends and family and strong links with the MND Association. No one could have not been moved by their plight, the house did not meet his needs as someone who walked with a frame indoors but knew he would be in a wheelchair permanently in the next few months, also to have a home that would be safe and secure for his family in the future. I was moved by the time and effort the show’s presenter and producers put into the programme but what struck me was….what about all the other people out there with the same diagnosis or other neurological conditions that have to wait for months or even years for a grant to create an accessible home. Are our politicians, councillors, directors and service managers aware of the impact of the wait on the client, their families and friends. Do they ever think about what it would be like to not shower or bathe for weeks on end or not being given the dignity to wash your own bottom without having someone to help you or not be able to get out your own home? Do we, as Occupational Therapists or you as

manufacturers and retailers do enough to lobby government for more equitable and efficient services? I am not sure we do. Should the BHTA, the “Do we, as Occupational Therapists College of Occupational or you as manufacturers and retailers Therapy and condition do enough to lobby government specific charities be for more equitable and efficient working together and services?” highlighting the need for timely equipment and adaptations, which not only provide dignity and quality of life to our clients and customers but can also prove very cost effective in the long run? So here is the challenge. Who will lead us in a joined up, powerful campaign to provide a service that we can all be proud of?

About Kate Kate Sheehan is a well-respected Occupational Therapist, with 24 years of clinical experience. She is Director of The OT Practice, which provides OT advice, consultancy and training to companies and individuals on the needs of the disabled people and 50+ market Kate has presented her work on Inclusive design and housing standards both nationally and internationally, including Australia, Croatia and Greece.

Christmas is coming! By Charlotte Gillan, Managing Partner, Classic Canes Christmas is coming, and with it the great opportunity for retailers to widen their customer base beyond their usual elderly and disabled clientele by reaching out to their customers’ friends, relatives and carers. According to the Carers’ Trust, there are seven million carers in the United Kingdom, approximately one in ten of the population, and many of them will be in need of a suitable gift for the person they look after. Many others need presents for friends and relatives who have particular care and mobility requirements. As anyone who has cared for an elderly or disabled person will agree, it can sometimes be difficult to find a practical and welcome present. When my grandmother died recently at the advanced age of 107, we discovered a huge stock of scented body lotions dating back at least a couple of decades in her bathroom. Friends and relatives had been repeatedly giving them to her without it occurring to any of them that she was far too stiff and frail to be energetically smothering herself with essence of passionflower. Instead, her best presents were things that made her life easier. The pill sorter, printed with

days of the week on each compartment, the expandable Cosyfeet shoes that meant she didn’t have to wear slippers with her best dress on Christmas Day, and (of course) the Classic Canes walking umbrella with its large, non-slip ferrule. This was very important for morale as it meant she could go out with an umbrella instead of a walking stick. Sticks, despite our family business, were for old people, and she didn’t reach her eleventh decade by considering herself to be an old person. “A window full of grey plastic medical Advertisements, items is not an obvious Christmas editorials and interviews shopping destination for the impulse in the local papers and shopper” radio stations, cards and flyers left with day centres, doctors’ surgeries and libraries, and, probably most importantly, jolly festive window displays full of colourful and appealing practical gifts are all good ways to draw in people who would not


Points of view otherwise visit a healthcare and mobility shop. A window full of grey plastic medical items is not an obvious Christmas shopping destination for the impulse shopper. However, cheery tartan slippers, folding canes in fashionable colours, bright calculators with giant buttons or pretty mugs with easy-to-grasp handles can all be presented as excellent Christmas gifts. Even a humble gadget for opening jars can make a wonderful present if teamed with a jar of cherries in brandy or similar treat, as can amplifying headphones when accompanied by a festive CD. Window and shop displays need to answer the prayers of the harassed Christmas shopper. Stand outside your shop, imagine you have a budget of £30, you need a present for a housebound friend and have less than ten minutes in which to buy it. If your shop can

encourage that customer through the door and send them out with a useful, beautifully gift wrapped item, you will have saved the recipient from yet more body lotion, and spread the good name of your shop, one gift buyer at a time.

About Charlotte Charlotte has been the Managing Partner of walking stick specialists Classic Canes since 2010. A philosophy graduate, her business background was in luxury goods sales and marketing. Before joining the family firm, she worked for the Asprey jewellery group, the Glenvarigill luxury motor group (Porsche and Ferrari dealers) and as a self-employed journalist specialising in retail, motoring and property.

Banks will lend….the secret is how you ask By Phil Rice, Managing Director, MediTek As the country’s economic woes continue to feature in the media headlines and in the heated debates of parliament, one thing still remains constant and that is the much lauded view that the banks need to start lending again and if they don’t recovery will be slower and more painful than necessary. Certainly, bank bashing has become so commonplace one could be forgiven for thinking it has become a national pastime. Perhaps it has for some. Banks have curtailed lending, but perhaps it is not a refusal to lend, but more a desire to lend more responsibly? Let’s not forget the present economic situation has largely been blamed squarely on irresponsible and reckless financial gambling in the city, so it’s hardly any surprise that the very institutions charged with that transgression are now taking more care over the investments and lending they now undertake. Last year, when I needed to raise capital to expand MediTek and fund the development of our recently launched new stairlift models, the company needed a sizable investment. Now, asking a bank for a seven figure sum of money was a big undertaking even back in the good old days of easy credit, and seemed impossible in the recent economic climate. However, what I discovered was that banks were happy to lend and that the secret was in how one applied. Whereas, perhaps in the past, banks were more or less content with a good idea,


September 2013

a close personal relationship or a popular market trend as the foundation of a loan, today they want very detailed business plans, sound financial forecasts and in-depth market knowledge. In other words, they needed to be really satisfied a business can deliver a return on that investment. In our case Yorkshire Bank’s North East Team had confidence in our business and our long-term plans and so supported MediTek’s application for funding, which led directly to the company being able to move to its prestigious new premises in County Durham, launch two new stairlift models and create numerous new jobs. I would urge any company, new, established, small or large to invest a considerable amount of time in preparing a sound business case for any loan application. There are even grants and specialist expertise available to assist companies through the government funded Growth Accelerator Scheme.

About Phil Phil has been in the homecare industry for many years and is currently Managing Director of MediTek Stairlifts based in Co Durham. He is also a great supporter of the BHTA and is currently Vice Chairman of the Stairlifts & Access Section. He likes to relax playing and composing music and enjoys clay pigeon shooting.


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Call today on

0800 019 7797 If you would like more information please contact the Companion Office on 0800 019 7797 or e-mail

Training Diary Doing any training? If you are providing training for the trade, then simply send us the details of the course, the date, any costs, the venue and the contact for booking places and we’ll include it in the Diary. Email with any details you have. September 2013 Invacare - Bed Set Up Operation & Maintenance/ Service. 11th September 2013. Bridgend. FOC. Prism Medical - Bariatric Study Day. 11th September 2013. Wakefield Cost: £50 Global Training by Silvalea – In-Situ Sling Solutions. 11TH September 2013. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Sizing & Measuring Slings. 12TH September. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Sunrise Medical - Seating and Positioning for Function and Mobility (for Dealers). 17th September. Brierley Hill. FOC Sunrise Medical - Jay Product Training for Dealers. 18th September. Brierley Hill. £100. Jay demonstration stock to a retail value of £470 supplied to attendees. Global Training by Silvalea – Complex Sling Solutions 2. 18TH September. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Toileting Sling Solutions. 19TH September. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Quantum Rehab- Powerchair Training. September 19th. Pride HQ. Returnable deposit required October Invacare - Pressure Ulcer Awareness & Mattress Care. 19th September 2013. Bridgend. FOC. Prism Medical - Paediatric Study Day. 19th September 2013.Wakefield. Cost: £50 Invacare - Overhead Hoists. 25th September 2013. Bridgend. FOC

October 2013 R82 UK Ltd - Structured Training in the Management of Medical Devices – Posturally Supportive Equipment for Children. Block 3: Clinical – 2nd & 3rd Block 1: Mechanical – 8th & 9th Block 2: Technical – 16th & 17th Block 3: Clinical – 30th & 31st City & Guilds Accredited. Halesowen. £185 +VAT per Block. Sunrise Medical - Powerchair Service and Maintenance – Mechanics. 2nd October 2013. Brierley Hill. FOC

Sunrise Medical - Powerchair Service and Maintenance – Electronics and Diagnostics. 3rd October. Brierley Hill. FOC Prism Medical - Train the Trainer Course – An extended course (1 day per week for 5 weeks). .Starting date Monday 7th October 2013. Wakefield. Accredited by University of Salford, Manchester. Cost: £650 Invacare - Manual Wheelchairs. 8th October 2013. Bridgend. FOC. Sunrise Medical - Mobility and Seating System Selection: a Paediatric Focus. 15th October 2013. Brierley Hill. FOC Invacare Scooters Service & Maintenance. 16th October 2013. Bridgend. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Introduction to Slings. 23RD October. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Complex Sling Solutions 1.24TH October. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Invacare – Kuschall. 23rd October 2013. Bridgend. FOC. Sunrise Medical - Scooter and Powerchair Service and Maintenance. 23rd October 2013. Brierley Hill. FOC Pride - Mobility Products Technical Trouble Shooting. October 23rd-24th . Pride HQ. £170 + VAT which includes B&B and dinner for one night, lunch both days. Global Training by Silvalea – Amputee Sling Solutions. 30TH October. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Paediatric Sling Solutions. 31ST October. Interactive Online Training. FOC.

Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Sizing & Measuring Slings. 14TH November. Interactive Online Training. FOC. R82 UK Ltd - Structured Training in the Management of Medical Devices – Posturally Supportive Equipment for Children. Block 1: Mechanical – 13th & 14th Block 2: Technical – 19th & 20th Block 3: Clinical – 27th & 28th City & Guilds Accredited. Halesowen. £185 +VAT per Block. Invacare - Ocean Shower Chair Workshop. 13th November 2013 Bridgend. FOC. Quantum Rehab- Powerchair Training. November 14th. Pride HQ. Returnable deposit required. Invacare - Impetus, 19th-20th November 2013. Venue: Invacare, Bridgend. £149 per person (plus VAT). Electric Mobility – Mobility Products Service Training Course. 20th November, Ilminster, Somerset. FOC. Pride - Mobility Products Technical Trouble Shooting. November 20th-21st. Pride HQ. £170 + VAT which includes B&B and dinner for one night, lunch both days. Sunrise Medical - Seating and Positioning for Function and Mobility (for clinicians). 26th November. Brierley Hill. FOC Sunrise Medical - The Jay Portfolio – a Clinical Perspective. 27th November. Brierley Hill. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Complex Sling Solutions 2. 27TH November. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Toileting Sling Solutions. 28TH November. Interactive Online Training. FOC.

November 2013 Sunrise Medical - Power Mobility Matching Technology to Need. 5th November. Brierley Hill. FOC Sunrise Medical - Power Wheelchair Assessment. Wednesday 6th November. Brierley Hill. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – In-Situ Sling Solutions. 13TH November. Interactive Online

December 2013 Sunrise Medical - Powerchair Control Systems and Programming (2 day course). 4th & 5th December/Follow up course TBC. Brierley Hill. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Introduction to Slings. 11TH December. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Walking & Standing

Harnesses. 12TH December. Interactive Online Training. FOC.

January 2014 Global Training by Silvalea – In-Situ Sling Solutions. 15th January. Interactive Online Training. FOC Invacare – Servicing/Maintenance & Adjustment on Manual Chairs. 15th January. Bridgend. FOC Invacare – Servicing/Maintenance & Adjustment on Power Chairs. 16th January. Bridgend. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Sizing & Measuring Slings. 16th January. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Complex Sling Solutions 2. 22nd January. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Invacare – Servicing/Maintenance of Patient Lifters. 22nd January. Bridgend. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Toileting Sling Solutions. 23rd January. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Invacare – Robin Overhead Hoists. 23rd January. Bridgend, FOC February 2014 Invacare – Servicing/Maintenance of Mattress Pump. 05th February. Bridgend. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Introduction to Slings. 12th February. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Global Training by Silvalea – Complex Sling Solutions 1. 13th February. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Invacare – Fault Finding on Power Chairs. 12th February. Bridgend. FOC Invacare – Power Chair Controls. 13th February. Bridgend. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Amputee Sling Solutions. 19th February. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Invacare – Scooter Servicing & Maintenance. 19th February. Bridgend. FOC Global Training by Silvalea – Paediatric Sling Solutions. 20th February. Interactive Online Training. FOC. Invacare – Power Chair Controls. 27th February 2014. Bridgend. FOC

Contacts for bookings

BHTA - Call 0207 702 2141 or email nigel.

Sunrise Medical – Contact Laura Payne laura. or visit

Pride Mobility – Call 01869 324600 or email

Invacare – Call Joan James on 01656 776283 or email

Global Training by Silvalea - +44 (0) 1626 331655 or visit

Electric Mobility – Call Sharon Newton on 01460 258100 or email

Quantum Rehab – Call 01869 324600 or email

R82 UK Ltd – Call 0121 561 2222, or email Martyn Davis on

Prism Medical – Call Cheryl Murdock on 0844 980 2260 or email: traininginfo@prismmedical.


September 2013


Still 13 months to go and the exhibitor list keeps on growing‌

Confirmed exhibitors so far: Classic Canes Drive Medical Patterson Medical Handicare First Senior Flexel Gerald Simonds Primacare Suite Options

Assistive Partner Uniscan Able 2 Karma Mobility Rise & Recline Happylegs MK Battery Etac Sidhil

Aidapt Gordon Ellis Chiltern Invadex Cefndy Wilcare The Helping Hand Co Blue Badge Company Kymco TGA

Jetmarine Timo UK Ableworld Electric Mobility Dartex Sitting Pretty Bartrams NRS Healthcare Sunrise Medical

front of people who want to do business, call Clare Johnson on 01962 736989 or

Here’s what some of our exhibitors have to say about Trade Days: We look forward to a professional and productive trade show and hope that our retailers will take up the opportunity to attend and support it fully. James Nicholls, Group Sales and Compliance Director, The First Senior Group

This is the first event I have been aware of dedicated to trade and as such is one we are keen to support. We have jumped at the opportunity to book a stand at this Make sure you book your diaries now for this not to miss

For more industry feedback, visit

Clare Johnsonon 01962 736 989. Or email us at

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change less to more As the mobility scooter market rapidly evolves, you always need products that combine popularity with profitability. the dual launch of the compact, foldable ‘car boot’ minimo and 6mph Vita lite delivers just that. these pioneering scooters meet the growing trend towards smaller models, whilst delivering more benefits and features than ever seen before in this class. Backed by unsurpassed trade service, experience more sales and less hassle with tga.

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THIIS is produced by: Homecare Publishing Ltd, The Stables, 16c High Street, Rushton, NN14 1RQ Tel: 01536 710050 Fax: 01536 418280 E-mail: BHTA Engage Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or used in any way without the written permission of the publisher. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher and although every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate, the publishers take no responsibility for errors or omissions.

Thiis 09 2013  
Thiis 09 2013