A SCHEME to recycle physiotherapy equipment is saving the NHS more than £2,000 a month.
Earlier this year, physiotherapy staff at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust developed a scheme to return walking sticks, frames and crutches they no longer needed.
Items were then decontaminated, in line with infection control guidance, and tested before being re-issued.
The response was so positive the physios have developed it further by adding stickers to all walking aids issued by the hospital.
The stickers state the equipment can be returned after use and include a telephone number for patients to call, to identify the location of their nearest drop-off point.
Nick Lane, lead therapist, said it was proving to be a great success.
He added: “The feedback we’ve had has been fantastic. Currently we are having in excess of £2,000 of stock returned, cleaned and re-used per month. We haven’t had to order any new crutches due to the volume we’ve had returned in the past month.”
The drop off points are:
Clifton Hospital Physiotherapy Department (9am - 4pm, Monday to Friday)
Fleetwood Hospital Physiotherapy Department (9am - 4pm, Monday to Friday)
The GP Led Walk-in-Centre at Whitegate Health Centre (8.30am - 5.30pm, seven days a week)
Blackpool Victoria Hospital Physiotherapy Department (8am - 4.30pm, Monday to Friday)
Anyone who has an item they feel could be returned and re-used can contact The Vic on (01253) 303512 between 8.30am and 4pm.