Trust’s plea for return of unwanted crutches

Staff across Mid Yorkshire’s Emergency Departments (A&Es) are encouraging local people to return crutches and walking sticks that are no longer needed.

Unreturned equipment can cost the NHS thousands of pounds every year and the Trust, which runs hospitals in Wakefield, Pontefract and Dewsbury, has launched a crutch amnesty to try and prevent unnecessary expense and inconvenience caused by patients not returning them.

Every month the Trust invests in more pairs of crutches to aid their patients’ recovery. Many of them are only used for a short time but some patients simply forget to return them when they are no longer needed – many storing them in cupboards or garages at home.

Kate Hollinshead, Senior Sister at the Emergency Department at Pontefract Hospital, said: “The Trust invests thousands of pounds each year to provide the best possible care for our patients. Crutches and walking sticks provided by the Trust are designed to be used time and time again, so we can reduce the amount we are spending on walking aids by encouraging local people to return them when they are no longer needed.

“To avoid any unnecessary expense to the Trust, we’re urging our former patients to return any crutches and walking sticks that are in good clean condition so that they can be reused.

Any crutches or walking sticks can be returned to the Physiotherapy or Emergency Departments (A&Es) at Pinderfields Hospital, Pontefract Hospital or Dewsbury and District Hospital.

Kate added: “If you’re unsure as to whether the equipment can be used again, please return it to our hospitals. Even if the ferrules (rubber feet) of the walking sticks have been worn, in some cases they can be replaced so that the equipment can be used again.”