Appeal launched following equipment shortage

County Hall. Ref exe 04-17 5978. Picture: Terry Ife

County Hall. Ref exe 04-17 5978. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

The coronavirus pandemic has led to a shortage of vital equipment such as walking frames and shower stools.

Equipment like this is often given to people when they leave hospital, or after a period of illness, to help them stay safe and regain their independence.

However, the coronavirus outbreak of the virus has meant that NHS and social care teams have needed to quickly support a much higher volume of patients with items of equipment, placing an increased demand on the local equipment service, and COVID-19 is also putting staffing pressures on manufacturers; supply and distribution chains are also feeling the strain.

Devon County Council has issued an urgent appealing for members of the public to return community equipment they no longer need to cope with the especially high demand for equipment.

Stocks of commodes, walking frames, shower stools, and raised toilet seats are in danger of becoming short in supply.

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Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, cabinet member for adult social care and health services, said: “Coronavirus has caused a significant increase in the need for vital community equipment.

If anyone has any of these items at home and no longer uses them, please can they get in touch, so that it can be reused to help those who are in need.

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“There is some excellent work going on to support the most vulnerable in our communities during these challenging times and this is another valuable way in which you can do that.”

The council is asking that anyone who has items of equipment they are no longer using to contact Millbrook Care on 0330 124 4491 so that a collection can be arranged, free of charge.

Once a collection is arranged, people will be asked to leave the item outside or in a safe place for collection by Millbrook.

Items that can be re-used will be fully tested, refurbished if required, and thoroughly cleaned before being reused.

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