Patients on the Stroke Unit at Blackpool Victoria Hospital are the first in the country to benefit from a new power assisted toilet.
The new toilet, funded by the hospital charity Blue Skies Hospitals Fund, is designed to support patients receiving care in the stroke unit for effective washing and drying.
The Palma Vita toilet has been purpose-designed to combine a conventional WC with integrated washing and drying which removes the need for the user, or their carer, to manually clean with toilet tissue.
It is the only toilet of its kind, specifically developed for elderly and disabled people, that is designed to properly support the user and position them correctly for effective washing and drying.
Rachael Bailey, Ward Manager of the Stroke Unit, said: “This is the first time a toilet of this kind has been placed within a hospital environment which is very exciting as it promotes independence and preserves patient dignity while improving patient safety, independence and dignity.
“It is a massive boost to the ward and we are really grateful to everyone who has supported the unit through our Blue Skies charity. We could not have done it without their support. Every penny donated really does make a difference.’’
Jean Sherrington, a volunteer who acts as a patient representative for the stroke ward said: “It’s a wonderful facility and fulfils one of the most important needs of hospital patients which is dignity. The fact that we are the first to recognise the importance of this to patients should be applauded.
“The stroke unit’s overall care of patients and the team’s skills and commitment to them cannot be praised enough.’’
Kila Redfearn, Head of the Blue Skies Hospitals Fund, said: “This is just one example of how donations to the hospital charity can make a real difference to the patients and their experience in the hospital. “Every penny donated really does make a difference.’’