24 January 2024

A new walking aid return and re-use scheme has been introduced at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH) which will benefit both patients and the environment.

Patients are being asked to return walking aids, such as crutches, walking sticks and walking frames to the once they no longer need them so they can be re-used.

As part of the new initiative, designated purple collection wheelie bins will be available inside the outpatients’ entrance of the hospital on Mytton Oak Road, so the walking aids can be conveniently dropped off.Volunteers Rebecca Barker and Paul Baskerville with Marie Devitt

With the support of volunteers, the returned equipment will undergo a meticulous process of checking, cleaning, refurbishing, and labelling. This ensures that the walking aids are in optimal condition for re-use, benefiting other patients in need.

The scheme accepts metal walking sticks, walking frames, crutches, and three or four-wheeled walkers that are in good condition. Dirty or broken items as well as single-use items like spinal braces, neck collars, slings, knee braces, foot/ankle braces, or boots unfortunately cannot be accepted.

Marie Devitt, Sustainability, Risk & Compliance Officer at The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) which runs RSH, said: “We would like to encourage patients to use this scheme and drop off their walking aids. This will save the Trust up to £46,000 annually and also reduce our carbon footprint.”

Plans are in progress for a similar scheme at the Princess Royal Hospital, Telford.

To return other assisted living aids such as shower stools and commodes, patients should contact the Community Equipment Service at 01952 603838 for collection.

The Trust is committed to reducing its environmental footprint and by participating in this initiative, it aims to save up to £46,000 annually and reduce emissions equivalent to 5,670 car trips from Bristol to London.

Caption: Volunteers Rebecca Barker and Paul Baskerville with Marie Devitt, centre