Bariatric is a clinical term describing the control and treatment of clinically overweight patients, covering a wide range of varying sizes and abilities. This medical branch typically applies to patients with a BMI of 40 or more.
As the number of bariatric individuals increases in society, hospitals and other facilities must meet the challenge of creating bariatric-friendly environments for their patients and occupants.
Bariatric plumbing solutions are specialized commercial-grade products designed to support the unique needs of this population. It’s important to find a supplier that has a strong knowledge of the specific challenges and who can recommend the specialty solutions that will meet the requirements and specification of your facility. Providing appropriate equipment to deliver care for bariatric patients and occupants can guarantee their safety and comfort, while simultaneously protecting your facility from costly liability, damage, and downtime.
At The Part Works, we specialize in recommending appropriate solutions for this important patient group. Some of those solutions can be found HERE
Why you might need a Bariatric Toilet?
One of the most common plumbing fixtures used for bariatric users is the bariatric toilet.
Most healthcare facilities will have a bariatric patient population, yet most hospitals are under-equipped to accommodate their special needs. The toilet you find inside patient bathrooms is most likely standard porcelain or vitreous china.
These toilets can typically only hold up to 350 pounds of static load and aren’t ideal for bariatric use. The term “static load,” simply means the amount of weight a toilet would be able to hold if the load itself wasn’t moving. The problem is that in actual use, a toilet needs to safely hold a much higher “dynamic load.” In simple terms, when people “plop” or drop onto a toilet, it can significantly increase the weight load beyond the standard 350-pound limit that is recommended with most commercial toilets. For a wall hung toilet, this is not good news.
Bariatric toilets are rated up to 1000 pounds in dynamic load, making hygiene routines safer, while providing the ability for bariatric individuals the ability to manage on their own.
Bariatric Toilets and Injuries
Toilet-related injuries are common, estimated to range up to 40,000 injuries a year, many of which were caused by bariatric patients breaking toilets breaking off of the wall.
One of the worst cases is something that occurs specifically to bariatric patients. If the toilet seat isn’t configured for their weight and body size, parts of the flesh can become trapped between the seat and the bowl, pinching excess folds of flesh. Worse still, due to the mechanics of their position on the seat, it can be difficult to stand back up, leaving the patient in a position that is both humiliating and uncomfortable.At The Part Works, we specialize in solutions for a range of bariatric plumbing needs. We stock products including specially designed bariatric toilet seats that won’t pinch or trap the user. Toilet supports that provide reinforcement for your existing wall hung toilets. Retrofit toilets that convert a wall hung toilet into a floor mount unit.
For us, it's are all about finding the right solution, within your unique circumstances and The Part Works has the knowledgeable staff to provide guidance for your needs
How Bariatric Toilets Save Money
While patient safety is the most obvious reason for a hospital to make bariatric considerations, the financial risk of not accommodating these patients can become significant for several reasons.
First, there is the immediate repair cost, to replace the broken toilet. Toilets can run several hundred dollars, and that cost is then compounded by the labor to install the new toilet.
Much more costly, however, is the problem of downtime.
Hospital downtime can be incredibly expensive, in many cases, hospitals can lose tens of thousands of dollars per day whenever a room is out of order. When your toilet breaks, the room could be unusable for several days to handle the cleanup and sanitation and wait for a a new toilet to be ordered, delivered, and installed, leaving the hospital itself to eat the cost of the room and all of the equipment in it.
Finally, and potentially most costly of all, there are also financial implications if you are held liable for any of the injuries discussed above.
Imagine a toilet collapses under the weight of a bariatric patient. Now imagine the implications of a restroom or patient room shut down, with toilet water soaking your floors, and a person unable to help themselves up, sitting naked in a pile of broken porcelain. It’s a scary scenario.
Bariatric Toilets Provide Better & More Affordable Care
There are a few options for upgrading to bariatric standards in toilets. A floor-mounted toilet, for example, offers added safety and stability for bariatric patients. Alternatively, using wall-mounted stainless-steel toilets in bariatric restrooms also leaves enough space underneath for easier cleaning.
Bottom Line, We’re Here To Help
At The Part Works, we can help you integrate bariatric requirements throughout your facilities. Healthcare organizations should set standards for bariatric patients. If you have questions about bariatric toilets, toilet supports, or toilet seats, we can help.
Worried about the added costs? You might want to start with a simple wall mount buttress toilet support. It’s a retrofit support system for toilets currently installed and will hold up to 1000lbs. It installs in about 20 minutes without removing the toilet. This makes a buttress support a fast and affordable solution that can save you money over time.
This is a great first step. As you consider bariatric requirements for your facility, remember The Part Works. Because Plumbing is messy and complicated, The Part Works is here to make sure your plumbing systems work.