• Seating Matters in the news along with Her Royal Highness Princess Anne

    The University of Ulster and Seating Matters research team met today with Her Royal Highness Princess Anne, the patron of the College of Occupational Therapy.

    The event celebrated the cooperation between the College of OT, academia and industry and marked the launch of the Seating Matters research project, The effectiveness of specialised seating provision for nursing home residents.

    Martina Tierney OT says, "We are delighted to launch the results of the 2 year research project today with the Patron of the College of OT. As Occupational Therapists, we strive to improve patient care and make our patient's lives better every day. This project has shown that there is real, hard evidence that proper seating can help us achieve this goal".

    The research project launched today examined the effect that seating assessments and provision of Seating Matters chairs had on a large group of patients in real-life care settings when compared to a control group using existing chairs.

    A team from the University of Ulster independently carried out this ethically approved study and recorded some fascinating results.

    Pressure ulcers reduced by 88% in the group using Seating Matters chairs and rose by 5% in the control group.

    The group using Seating Matters chairs also experienced increased functional ability, decreased staff time in postural correction and significant increases in blood oxygen levels.

    Economists from the University of Ulster Business School then studied the impact this could have on healthcare budgets. They calculated that if a hospital or care home were to provide a Seating Matters chair and replicate these results with every patient, they could save 80% of their pressure ulcer costs.

    Martina says, "With pressure ulcers costing in excess of £3bn each year in the UK, this would be a significant cost benefit to NHS and overall benefit to patient care."

    The Seating Matters chairs were well received by HRH Princess Anne. When viewing the chair with Martina Tierney she said "I may use it to have a sleep in later!"

    Her Royal Highness also commended the links between the University of Ulster and industry, urging those present to"take these solutions to the widest possible audience".

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