The use of geriatric chairs is not new in small assisted living programs and adult day care centers. We need them in order to serve the needs of those with serious posture and related limitations. These items can make feeding easier as well as relieve pressure and add comfort to long periods of sitting.
In some areas, especially across America and Canada both fire inspectors and licensing surveyors are expressing objections to their usage citing their concern over unwarranted restraint. However, even from a clinical and abuse definition perspective there can be a meeting of the minds on this.
Newer chairs allow the table section of this furniture item to be easily removed with just a push. This is demonstrated in one of the chairs in use by Adult Care & Respite of St. Petersburg, Florida, as pictured here with center nurse manager Gavin Hopkins. (www.adultcareandrespite.com)
Of course your staff must be thoroughly briefed on how the chairs are used and how the table section is removed rather easily.
Let’s be quick to engage both fire and licensing personnel, without taking offense, and educate them on how certain important programmatic items can add to your clinical value. In this way we serve the safety of our clients and residents while at the same time managing a highly functional program.
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