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Independent transfer into bed



Freda’s story

 Freda is an 81-year-old lady who lives alone and is independent with all activities of daily living. Freda values her independence greatly and is determined to retain her independence.Freda was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis approximately 3 years ago which causes her great pain and restricted range of movement in her hips and knees. This restricted range of movement and pain impacts greatly on Freda’s transfers. Freda is just 5 foot tall and weighs approximately 70kg. The majority of Freda’s weight is around her abdomen. The combination of the additional weight, mass and poor muscle tone

in her abdomen increase the difficulties she experiences with bed mobility and transfers.

Freda contacted her Occupational Therapist and explained that when sat on her profiling bed at the lowest point, she was unable to retain contact with the floor. Not only did this reduce her stability, her poor abdominal strength and the soft surface of the mattress caused her great difficulty in shuffling back on to the bed to obtain a more supported, seated position. As a result, Freda remained near the edge of the bed as she attempted to lift her legs in to bed. This not only required great effort, but had resulted in Freda slipping off the edge of the bed on three occasions.Fortunately Freda had not experienced any significant injuries. However, following the falls, she struggled to stand, and reported feeling embarrassed and anxious about carrying out further bed transfers.


A FloorBed™ was put into place for a trial. The floor level function of the FloorBed™ enabled Freda’s feet to retain contact with the floor once sat on the bed. This not only enabled Freda to retain a safer and supported, seated position, but also allowed her to use her feet to assist with shuffling back on to the bed. Once Freda was safely sat on the bed, she lowered the bed even further, enabling her to slide her legs into bed with minimal effort rather than having to lift them.The provision of the FloorBed™ not only reduced the risk of a bed fall injury, it significantly reduced Freda’s difficulties with all aspects of bed mobility and transfers, reduced her anxieties and enabled Freda to continue to transfer in and out of bed independently.

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Middle aged man


Peter’s story

Forty-nine year old Peter has an acquired brain injury following a road traffic accident. Peter is unable to mobilise himself and is dependent on a self-propel wheelchair for all mobility. Peter transfers between furniture by sliding from one piece of furniture to the other at a 90 degree angle. Peter is able to follow basic instruction; however, he requires support to ensure he is able to carry out most of his daily living tasks safely, as he can be impulsive and has poor risk awareness.

When transferring into bed, Peter slides with minimal difficulty from the wheelchair to sit on the edge of the bed, however, he has significant difficulty lifting his legs onto the bed. Once sat on the bed’s edge, Peter would use his whole body weight to swing his legs into bed. This was a very uncontrolled movement and placed him at significant risk of injuring himself on the bed rails, or falling out of bed on the other side if the bed rails were not in use. Several interventions have been trialled, including a powered leg lifter, support from the monkey pole, carer support, and a low profiling bed of 200mm. Unfortunately, none of these interventions were successful and so Peter continued to place himself at risk.


Using a FloorBed™, Peter is able to slide from the wheelchair onto the edge of the bed and lowers the bed to the floor. He no longer requires the leverage of his full body weight to bring his legs onto the bed. Now, Peter leans on the back rest and ‘walks’ his feet round to the foot end of the bed, where he slides his legs onto the bed. The floor height of the bed enables Peter to bring his legs onto the bed in a much more controlled manner, significantly reducing the risk of an injury. In addition, the bed rails can be removed, since the floor height reduces the risk of injury in the event of a bed fall.

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Angie’s story

31year old Angie has a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder, dyslexia and dyspraxia, in addition she experiences severe anxiety, eczema and asthma. Angie has poor co-ordination and fine-motor skills which impacts on many daily physical tasks including mobility and transfers. Angie’s weight of approximately 31 stone also contributes to these physical challenges.

Angie experiences frequent nightmares which has led to a significant fear of falling out of bed, Angie has established that these occur when she is sleeping in a standard height bed. Angie, therefore placed a mattress on the floor and slept on this which reduced her nightmares and anxiety of bed falls.


Although sleeping on a mattress reduced Angie’s anxieties, it created other challenges; Angie struggled to transfer on and off the mattress due it’s ultra-low height and is dependent on support of the window sill and radiator which places her at risk of falls when trying to stand. Due to the nature of the task and Angie’s weight, it is not safe or feasible for her support worker to assist with this transfer.

As a result of the risk and difficulty, Angie limits the amount of bed transfers carried out and this has led to urinary incontinence at night.


Angie required a bed that facilitated her weight of 31 stone and provided additional space for turning. With a mattress platform of just 7cm, the ultra-low height of the FloorBed™TM 1 Plus was similar to that of the mattress on the floor; however, the height adjustable function (maximum height of 64 cm) allows the bed to be raised to an appropriate height.

In addition, the extra 15 cm width took the bed to 105 cm wide, which provided Angie with additional space when lying and turning on the bed. The combination of the ultra-low height, the extra width and additional weight capacity of 35 stone contributed greatly to reducing Angie’s anxieties and increasing her levels of independence.

Angie raised the bed to an appropriate height, sat on the edge and then lowered the bed to the floor. Angie was then able to slide her legs into bed with great ease – this had previously been a struggle when using a standard height bed. Once in the bed, Angie reported feeling safe and secure and was able to raise the bed to enable her to carry out safe and independent transfers, facilitating quick access to the toilet at night.

Click here to download the full case study.

CAS-FB5-004EN Rev 01