Self-assessing back pain by app just as effective as traditional methods, study shows

man with back pain

Patients can assess their own back pain using an app on their phone or tablet as effectively as current paper methods, a new study from the University of Warwick has shown.

The study, published in the open access journal Journal of Medical Internet Research, demonstrates that digital versions of established measurements for assessing back pain are just as reliable and responsive, opening the possibility for their use by patients for routine measurements and clinical trials.

The researchers see this study as a necessary first step in the greater use of digital media in clinical settings, in light of recent calls for greater use of such technology by healthcare providers.

Tetraplegia charity Regain launches Transforming Lives appeal 

The Regain Transforming Lives appeal launch

Regain, the charity for sports tetraplegics, is excited to announce its new fundraising appeal, Transforming Lives. Aiming to raise one million pounds, the Transforming Lives campaign was officially launched at the Waldorf Hotel on Thursday 22nd November by the charity’s founder and chairman, Lord Ivar Mountbatten, and former Olympic swimmer and Regain patron, Mark Foster.

Reliable Cleanliness from Closomat

Closomat toilet

How long would you expect a piece of technology to last? In Mandy de la Mare’s case, it’s decades. The “tech” in question is her Closomat shower (wash & dry) toilet. Looking like, and capable of being used as a conventional WC, the Closomat has integrated automatic douching and drying. The user does not have to wipe clean (or be wiped clean).

“I’ve had a Closomat for 42 years and am only on my second one!” she says. “I only replaced the first one when I moved in 2003 after 30 years, and thought then that I had better upgrade to a new one.”

National Trust at Croome

People walking their dog at the National Trust at Croome

The National Trust at Croome, a beautiful ‘Capability’ Brown landscape, historic house and wartime museum, is striving to make Croome as accessible as possible to its visitors.

On arrival, the Visitor Centre team offer orientation to routes around the estate.   Croome’s accessibility map also shows the gradients of garden paths within the parkland and where seating is available.  

Visitors can pre-book one of the free electric outdoor mobility vehicles before heading off to discover the parkland with statues, temples, follies and lake.

Wheelchair friendly shuttle buses also run between the Visitor Centre and the house throughout the day.

4 ways to create an easy access bathroom

easy access bathroom

Every little opportunity to gain back a little bit of independence can make the biggest difference to someone disabled. To avoid any disruption to a daily routine that can come with mobility issues, it is important to simplify and tailor your living space to your needs. Bespoke Interiors Newcastle has put together 4 tips to help you achieve just that without compromising style and design over function. 

Replace a bath with a walk in shower enclosureaccessible-bathroom.jpg

Older People's Charity Offers New Long-Term Health Conditions Guide

Older People's Charity Offers New Long-Term Health Conditions Guide

With 58 per cent of people over 60 living with long-term health conditions* Independent Age, the older people’s charity, has been listening to older people who have been advising on the issues they regularly deal with but find difficult to manage. Working with older people plus GPs and other health professionals the charity has developed a new advice guide to address their needs.  

CASE STUDY: Removing Barriers: Children in crisis can’t get specialist equipment quickly enough

Mum Nikki during the specialist equipment crisis

Some situations require specialist equipment in an emergency – when a child’s condition and associated behaviours put their lives at risk of serious injury or death.  Despite most local health and social care services having jointly commissioned integrated equipment stores to cater for the emergency needs of adults, no such public service exists to respond to the urgent, often life-threatening, needs of disabled or terminally ill children.  As a country we’re failing some of the most vulnerable in our society.

For the past five years Newlife has been running the UK’s first and only Emergency Loan service, delivering specialist equipment to disabled children in crisis within 72 hours of request.

Urgent Action Needed To End Equipment Crisis

Malachi on sofa during equipment crisis

A disabled children’s charity will publish a damning report today exposing major and unlawful failings surrounding the provision of specialist equipment to some of the UK’s most vulnerable children.  

Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children is urgently calling on the government to help those children whose lives are at risk because they don’t have the specialist equipment they need. 

In its report, Equipment Crisis for Disabled Children, launched today at the House of Commons, the charity highlights why children are being deprived of specialist equipment like walking frames, specialist car seats and beds, and has published a practical four-point-plan to fix it.  

OxSight extends range of smart glasses with launch of OxSight Crystal™

Family buying OxSight glasses

UK-based technology start-up OxSight has launched a new smart glasses device for people with visual impairments. The new OxSight Crystal glasses, like the existing OxSight Prism glasses, use revolutionary image interpretation technology and algorithms to enhance the remaining sight for people with peripheral vision loss and make users feel more confident in their surroundings. Both OxSight Crystal and OxSight Prism have been approved as medical devices, and are available through eye health clinicians across the UK. The OxSight Crystal glasses were officially launched at an OxSight community event in London on 24th November. 

Haskins Garden Centre in Ferndown due to support Autism Wessex with festive events

Haskins Garden Centre festive shopping bags

Haskins in Ferndown is delighted to be hosting two events this Christmas to support its nominated charity of the year, Autism Wessex.

The Family Shopping Evening (£2 per ticket, including a visit to see Santa in Santa’s Grotto) will take place on Thursday November 29 from 6pm. 

The Christmas Shopping Experience (£1 per ticket) will take place on Thursday December 6 from 6pm. There will be discounts, drinks and entertainment.

Tickets for both events can be pre-booked at Haskins in Ferndown and all proceeds raised from ticket entry from the events will be donated to Autism Wessex. The centre will be open on both nights until 8pm.

Mark Lane: Gardening tips for people who thought they could never garden

Mark Lane is an afeard-winning landscape gardener and TV host

Mark Lane, wheelchair user and presenter of the award-winning BBC Gardeners’ World, as well as the RHS Flower Shows, discusses getting out into the garden and how to make gardening easier if you have mobility issues…

It doesn’t matter what level of ability you have, you can still enjoy gardening. Gardening makes you feel safe and secure and it has a positive effect on mental and physical wellbeing. With these simple tips you can get outside, enjoy nature, be alone for personal reflection or socialise with family and friends.