Assistive toilet seats and automatic bidet technology improved the well-being of the residents of Kustaankartano Senior Centre in pilot projects carried out this year in Helsinki.
The pilot projects were carried out as part of the City of Helsinki innovation unit Forum Virium Helsinki’s Co-created Health and Wellbeing (CoHeWe) project, in which cities develop customer-oriented and smart health care services in collaboration with companies. The 6Aika project is funded by the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council.
The two pilot projects carried out at Kustaankatano involved Visu Työhyvinvointi Oy testing battery-powered, fully adjustable toilet seats and Väinö Korpinen Oy testing electric Lift lifting seats and Bidette automatic bidet seats. The piloted adjustable toilet seats make it easier for users to sit on and get up from the toilet. Bidette is an automatic bidet set with wash and dryer functions that can be installed on an existing toilet bowl and pre-programmed with specific washing and drying settings. The aim of the assistive devices was to make it easier for the residents of the senior centre to go to the toilet and to decrease the workload of the centre’s staff.
“The pilots provided the staff of Kustaankartano Senior Centre with experience in well-being technologies and improved attitudes towards technical aids, as the adjustable toilet seats proved easy to use and worked well. The pilots also decreased the physical workload of nurses. The adjustable toilet seats had a positive impact on the quality of life of residents by making it easier for them to move around in the bathroom,” says Head Nurse Sanna Akpan from Kustaankartano Senior Centre.
Managing Director of Visu Työhyvinvointi Oy Juha Rautio was pleased with the opportunity to pilot the adjustable toilets seats at Kustaankartano.
“You could sense that the unit’s staff and management had a positive attitude towards piloting and trying out our product and utilising it as actively as possible with clients. The monitoring, documentation and assessment exceeded our expectations. We are very grateful to the staff and supervisors of Kustaankartano and the family members of the unit’s residents for their feedback. It is vital for us to receive comprehensive feedback to support product development so that we can create products that promote the ability to function of different user groups while also supporting the ability to work of employees. I would also like to extend our thanks to Forum Virium’s experts who coordinated the pilot project in an active and participatory manner,” he says.
Companies interested in testing their products in other cities as well
Väinö Korpinen Oy also achieved their goals for the pilot.
“Getting to test products in a real operating environment and receiving feedback from users provides us with valuable information on the added value that our products provide to users. We will also be utilising the feedback received in our product development work in the future,” says the company’s Regional Sales Manager Henri Tuomainen.
Both companies intend to utilise the results of the pilot projects in their product development. The aim is to next adapt the adjustable toilet seats to the needs of people with disabilities and informal carers. Kustaankartano Senior Centre is also considering implementing the piloted assistive devices permanently. The two companies are interested in testing their products in other cities as well.
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