Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20090113633 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/995,971
PCT numberPCT/GB2006/002645
Publication date7 May 2009
Filing date17 Jul 2006
Priority date20 Jul 2005
Also published asCA2615953A1, CN201147430Y, CN201178864Y, CN201197518Y, CN201197520Y, CN201282865Y, DE602006006191D1, DE602006007010D1, DE602006011175D1, EP1909617A2, EP1909617B1, EP2025264A1, EP2025265A1, US7895689, US8397324, US8528704, US20080264733, US20080282469, US20080295248, WO2007010213A2, WO2007010213A3
Publication number11995971, 995971, PCT/2006/2645, PCT/GB/2006/002645, PCT/GB/2006/02645, PCT/GB/6/002645, PCT/GB/6/02645, PCT/GB2006/002645, PCT/GB2006/02645, PCT/GB2006002645, PCT/GB200602645, PCT/GB6/002645, PCT/GB6/02645, PCT/GB6002645, PCT/GB602645, US 2009/0113633 A1, US 2009/113633 A1, US 20090113633 A1, US 20090113633A1, US 2009113633 A1, US 2009113633A1, US-A1-20090113633, US-A1-2009113633, US2009/0113633A1, US2009/113633A1, US20090113633 A1, US20090113633A1, US2009113633 A1, US2009113633A1
InventorsStephen Hayes, Stephen Hollyoak
Original AssigneeStephen Hayes, Stephen Hollyoak
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Bed assembly
US 20090113633 A1
Abstract
A bed assembly (10) includes a frame (22) which supports four mattress support panels (50-56) which are able to move with pivoting of the various parts of the frame (22). The frame (22) is formed with a plurality of transverse struts (40) which depend from the frame (22). The mattress support panels (50-56) are releasably supported on the struts (40). The panels (50-56) can thus be removed to gain access to the bed components below the platform (20). The frame (22) presents substantially vertical side wall to accommodate a variety of mattresses, including mattresses not specifically designed for the bed (10).
Images(9)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(26)
1. A mattress support platform for a bed assembly including a frame provided with internal side walls which provide substantially vertical mattress holding side surfaces, a plurality of support elements coupled to the frame for supporting a plurality of mattress support panels and depending from the frame, and a plurality of hinges on the frame allowing the platform to be configured into a plurality of shapes.
2. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the frame provides substantially vertical mattress holding side surfaces around the entirety of a mattress reception area of the bed.
3. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the hinges have a profile which substantially matches the profile of the remainder of the frame structure.
4. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the frame is formed of struts which have a rounded rectangular outer shape in transverse cross-section.
5. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the support elements are a plurality oftransverse struts extending transversally between two opposing side struts of the frame and depending therefrom.
6. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the frame is extendable.
7. A mattress support platform according to claim 6, wherein there is provided at one end of the frame a telescopic arrangement of extension struts which slide within corresponding frame struts.
8. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the hinges and depending support elements provide a pivoting arrangement which can increase a separation between adjacent mattress support elements, and thus any panels supported thereon, when one of the sections is pivoted upwardly.
9. A mattress support platform according to claim 1, wherein the hinges and depending support elements provide a pivoting arrangement which can reduce a separation between adjacent mattress support elements, and thus any panels supported thereon, when one of the sections is pivoted downwardly.
10. A mattress support platform for a bed assembly including a frame and a plurality of transverse support struts coupled to the frame for holding a plurality of mattress support panels and depending from the frame, and a plurality ofhinges on the frame for allowing the frame to be configured into a plurality of shapes.
11. A mattress support platform according to claim 10, wherein the frame provides substantially vertical mattress holding side surfaces around the entire of a mattress reception area of the bed.
12. A mattress support platform according to claim 10, wherein the hinges have a profile which substantially matches the profile ofthe remainder ofthe frame structure
13. A mattress support platform according to claim 10, wherein the struts have a rounded rectangular outer shape in transverse cross-section.
14. A mattress support platform according to claim 10, wherein the frame is extendable.
15. A mattress support platform according to claim 14, wherein there is provided at one end ofthe frame a telescopic arrangement of extension struts which slide within corresponding frame struts.
16. (canceled)
17. A mattress support platform for a bed assembly, the mattress support platform including a frame having:
a. two or more frame sections, each frame section including:
(1) opposing side walls extending lengthwise across the bed assembly,
(2) one or more struts extending between the side walls across the width ofthe bed assembly, wherein at least a substantial portion ofthe top surface of each strut is situated below the top of the side walls, whereby the side walls define mattress-holding side surfaces for a mattress resting on the struts;
b. hinges situated between the side walls ofthe frame sections, the hinges allowing pivoting of the frame sections about axes extending across the width of the bed assembly.
18. The mattress support platform of claim 17 wherein the hinges are situated above the top surfaces of the struts.
19. The mattress support platform of claim 17 further including two or more support panels, each support panel:
a. being received within one of the frame sections;
b. having a lower support panel surface resting atop the top surfaces of the struts within the frame section; and
c. having an upper support panel surface which is concavely depressed across the width of the bed assembly.
20. The mattress support platform of claim 17 further including two or more support panels, each support panel:
a. being received within one of the frame sections;
b. having a lower support panel surface resting atop the struts within the frame section;
c. having an upper support panel surface situated below the top of the sidewalls ofthe frame section wherein the support panel is received.
21. The mattress support platform of claim 17 further including two or more support panels, each support panel:
a. being received within one of the frame sections;
b. having a lower support panel surface bearing one or more depressions therein, wherein the struts within the frame section receiving the support panel are received within the depressions.
22. The mattress support platform of claim 17 further including two or more support panels, each support panel:
a. being received within one of the frame sections;
b. having a lower support panel surface which removably snap-fits onto the struts within the frame section.
23. The mattress support platform of claim 17 wherein:
a. the frame sections include:
(1) a back rest section,
(2) a seat rest section adjacent the back rest section,
(3) a thigh rest section adjacent the seat rest section, and
(4) a leg rest section adjacent the seat rest section;
b. each section includes a support panel received therein, the panel including a lower support panel surface fixed against translation atop the struts within the frame section, wherein the panels of the sections are bounded by panel edges;
wherein:
(1) when the back rest section is pivoted with respect to the seat rest section from:
(a) an orientation wherein the panel ofthe back rest section is at least substantially parallel to the panel of the seat rest section, to
(b) an orientation wherein the panel ofthe back rest section is inclined upwardly with respect to the panel of the seat rest section,
the spacing between the panel edges ofthe panel ofthe back rest section and the panel of the seat rest section increases; and
(2) when the leg rest section is pivoted with respect to the thigh rest section from:
(a) an orientation wherein the panel of the leg rest section is at least substantially parallel to the panel of the thigh rest section, to
(b) an orientation wherein the panel ofthe leg rest section is inclined downwardly with respect to the panel of the thigh rest section,
the spacing between the panel edges ofthe panel of the leg rest section and the panel of the thigh rest section decreases.
24. The mattress support platform of claim 17 wherein:
a. the frame sections include:
(1) a back rest section,
(2) a seat rest section adjacent the back rest section, and
(3) a thigh rest section adjacent the seat rest section,
b. each section includes a support panel received therein, the panel including a lower support panel surface situated atop the struts within the frame section, wherein the panels ofthe sections are bounded by panel edges;
wherein:
(1) the panel edge ofthe seat rest section situated closest to the thigh rest section is convexly contoured toward the thigh rest section across the width of the bed assembly;
(2) the panel edge ofthe thigh rest section situated closest to the seat rest section is concavely contoured away from the seat rest section across the width of the bed assembly.
25. The mattress support platform of claim 17 wherein:
a. the frame sections include:
(1) a back rest section,
(2) a seat rest section adjacent the back rest section, and
(3) a thigh rest section adjacent the seat rest section,
b. each section includes a support panel received therein, the panel being situated above the struts within the frame section, wherein the panels of the sections are bounded by panel edges;
wherein the panel edge of the thigh rest section between the thigh rest section and the seat rest section is spaced along the length ofthe bed assembly away from the hinges situated between the side walls of the thigh rest section and the seat rest section.
26. The mattress support platform of claim 17 wherein one or more ofthe frame sections has opposing side walls which are extensible, whereby the length of the frame section may be increased.
Description
  • [0001]
    The present invention relates to a bed assembly and to a configurable bed platform or frame.
  • [0002]
    Modern hospital beds are generally designed to be configurable into a variety of profiles. Typically, they are provided with a plurality of sections which can be tilted or otherwise moved to change a patient's position on the bed. For example, they are usually provided with a back rest section which can pivot from a substantially flat position to a raised sitting position, with a thigh rest section which can be pivoted from a substantially flat position to a knee raised position, and with leg rest section coupled to the thigh rest section and able to be raised with the thigh rest section while keeping the feet in a lower position or while keeping the feet in a raised position.
  • [0003]
    Beds having such a configurable platform are well known in the art and generally work satisfactorily. However, they often require the use of a specialised mattress designed specifically for that platform. This limits the variety of mattresses to those available from the bed manufacturer or other specialist supplier and does not allow for a user to select other mattresses not specifically designed for the bed.
  • [0004]
    Furthermore, bed assemblies of this type are becoming increasingly complex, leading to the need to maintain and service an increasing number of components. It is often difficult to gain access to these components, leading to more time consuming and labour intensive servicing.
  • [0005]
    The present invention seeks to provide an improved bed assembly and configurable platform or frame.
  • [0006]
    According to an aspect of the present invention, there is provided a mattress support platform for a bed assembly including a frame provided with internal side walls which provide substantially vertical mattress holding side surfaces, a plurality of support elements coupled to the frame for supporting a plurality of mattress support panels and depending from the frame, and a plurality of hinges on the frame allowing the platform to be configured into a plurality of shapes.
  • [0007]
    The provision of a frame with substantially vertical mattress holding side surfaces can in practice allow any mattress of complementary dimensions to be supported in the frame, even a mattress which does not fit precisely into the internal space of the frame. Moreover, it is not necessary to use a mattress with particular structural features, as is the case with a number of existing hospital beds. Thus, virtually any mattress could be used, dependent upon the needs of the patient and the wishes of the user. This can be particularly important when it is deemed a patient would benefit from a particular mattress type not supplied by the bed supplier.
  • [0008]
    The frame preferably provides substantially vertical mattress holding side surfaces around the entire of a mattress reception area of the bed.
  • [0009]
    The hinges are preferably of a type which have a profile which substantially matches the profile of the remainder of the frame structure, thereby to present a substantially smooth frame, not requiring particular coverings or other measures to protect the patient and staff from sharp profiles and to cover possible areas which can collect dirt and germs.
  • [0010]
    The frame is preferably formed of struts which have a rounded rectangular outer shape in transverse cross-section. Such a shape provides substantially vertical side walls while still retaining a smooth profile. Other shapes could be used, such as a D-shape, in which the straight portion of the D-shape is located on the inside surfaces of the frame. It is also possible to use struts which are circular or oval in cross-section because these would still provide vertical mattress support surfaces but such shapes are not preferred.
  • [0011]
    The holding elements are preferably a plurality of transverse struts extending transversally between two opposing side struts of the frame and depending therefrom. Holding elements of this type provide, when the mattress support panels are removed, a substantially unimpeded path to the components of the bed assembly below the platform, which can considerably facilitate servicing of these components as described, for example, in the applicant's co-pending British patent applications filed the same day as the present application.
  • [0012]
    In the preferred embodiment, the frame is extendable. Advantageously, this is achieved by providing at one end of the frame, usefully the foot end, a telescopic arrangement of extension struts which slide within the frame struts at that end of the frame.
  • [0013]
    The hinges and depending support elements provide a pivoting arrangement which can increase a separation between adjacent mattress support elements and thus panels when one of the sections is pivoted upwardly, having the effect of lengthening the mattress support area to follow better the stretching of a patient's back during such action. They can also provide for a shortening of a separation between adjacent mattress support elements and thus panels when one of the sections is pivoted downwardly. These features Are described in detail in the following description and covered in the applicant's co-pending British patent application number 0523168.3 filed the same day as the present application.
  • [0014]
    According to another aspect of the present invention, there is provided a mattress support platform for a bed assembly including a frame and a plurality of transverse support struts coupled to the frame for holding a plurality of mattress support panels and depending from the frame, and a plurality of hinges on the frame for allowing the frame to be configured into a plurality of shapes.
  • [0015]
    According to another aspect of the present invention, there is provided a bed assembly including a platform as specified herein.
  • [0016]
    Embodiments of the present invention are disclosed below, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
  • [0017]
    FIG. 1 shows a left-side perspective view from above of a preferred embodiment of a bed assembly in a flat configuration;
  • [0018]
    FIG. 2 shows a right-side perspective view from above of the bed assembly of FIG. 1 in a chair configuration;
  • [0019]
    FIG. 3 shows the bed assembly of FIGS. 1 and 2 in the chair configuration with the mattress support panels and patient support panels removed;
  • [0020]
    FIG. 4 is a plan view of a part of the bed assembly of FIG. 1;
  • [0021]
    FIGS. 5A and 5B shows a bed extension mechanism in extended and non-extended positions;
  • [0022]
    FIG. 6 shows in plan view and in schematic form two mattress support sections of the bed of FIG. 1;
  • [0023]
    FIG. 7 is a plan view of the bed assembly of FIG. 3;
  • [0024]
    FIG. 8 is an enlarged view of a portion of the plan view of FIG. 7;
  • [0025]
    FIG. 9 is an enlarged view of a portion of the plan view of FIG. 7;
  • [0026]
    FIG. 10 shows a side elevational view of the mattress support panels only of the bed assembly of FIG. 1, with the bed in a chair configuration;
  • [0027]
    FIG. 11 is an enlarged view of a part of the bed assembly of FIG. 1; and
  • [0028]
    FIG. 12 shows a keypad zone of the bed of FIG. 1 in use by a patient.
  • [0029]
    Referring to FIG. 1, there is shown a preferred embodiment of bed assembly 10 which includes a wheeled base 12 provided with four castors 14, a headboard 16 and footboard 18. Coupled to the base 12 is a bed platform 20 which can be raised and lowered relative to the base 12 and tilted by means of one or more electrical actuators (not shown), also of conventional type.
  • [0030]
    The platform 20 is provided with a frame 22 formed, in this embodiment, of four frame sections 24, 26, 28 and 30 which are coupled to one another by means of hinged joints 32, 34 and 36. The frame 22 is typically made of metal or a metal alloy.
  • [0031]
    Each frame section 24-30 is provided with an upper frame member having substantially vertical inner side walls 38 (better seen in FIGS. 2 and 3) and a plurality of depending transverse struts 40 (better seen in FIGS. 3 and 4) which form a recessed support surface for supporting, in this embodiment, four mattress support panels 50, 52, 54 and 56. These panels 50-56, together with the pivoting frame members 24-30, form respectively the backrest section, seat section, thigh rest section and leg rest section typically found in conformable beds of this nature.
  • [0032]
    The hinges 32, 34 and 36 are provided in the upper frame members 24-30 and enable the frame members to pivot relative to one another about the hinges 32-36, as will be apparent from a consideration of FIGS. 2, 3 and 7 to 9, and described in detail below. It can be seen that the hinges 32-36 are built into the upper frame members 24-30 and present substantially smooth outer surfaces in order to prevent any discomfort or injury to the patient or care staff.
  • [0033]
    As can be seen in FIG. 1, the mattress support panels 50-56 are curved so as to present a concave upper surface when looking down on the bed platform 20. The panels 50-56 lie below the frame walls 38, preferably by a distance sufficient to allow a mattress placed on the panels 50-56 to fit within the frame 22 so as to be held by the substantially vertical side surfaces provided by the walls 38 of the frame 22. That distance is preferably less than this so that the upper surface of the mattress extends above the frame 22, to hold the patient comfortably above the hard surfaces of the frame 22 (as shown in FIG. 11).
  • [0034]
    At least some of the mattress support panels 50-56 are preferably removable and advantageously made of blow mouldings from any suitable plastics material. The panels 50-56 are rigid.
  • [0035]
    Cut-outs 60 in the panels 50-56 provide handles for easy removal of the panels 50-56 from the bed 10 and for their handling. There are preferably also provided snap fittings 55 (some of which are visible in FIG. 10) on the underside surfaces of the panels 50-56 which snap onto the transverse struts 40 to retain the panels in place. In the preferred embodiment, each snap fitting is formed from one or more bosses extending beyond the lower surfaces of the panels 50-56, the bosses having curved surfaces which form a snap fit gripper member which snaps on to the struts 40.
  • [0036]
    FIG. 1 also shows two patient retention panels 80, 82. Typically, corresponding retention panels are provided on the other side of the bed assembly 10 but are omitted from FIG. 1 for the purposes of clarity. These panels, which can be of a type known in the art, can be moved between the raised position shown and a lowered position in which they lie alongside the frame 22 so as to be below the level of the mattress of the bed. In the raised position the panels 80, 82 retain a patient on the bed, while in the lowered position they enable a patient to get off and get onto the bed and also provide unimpeded access to the patient.
  • [0037]
    Referring now to FIG. 2, the bed assembly of FIG. 1 is shown in a chair configuration. In this configuration the back rest 30, 50 is raised by pivoting of the hinge 32 between the back rest section 30 and the seat section 28. In the configuration shown the hinge point 36 between the thigh rest 54 and the leg rest 56 is also raised. This raised configuration of the hinge 36 represents a knee break such that in the configuration shown in FIG. 2 a patient would be sitting up with knees raised.
  • [0038]
    The various sections 24-30 of the frame 22 can be moved in the manner shown by means of one or more actuators provided in the bed assembly 10. The actuators are well known in the art, as is the type of control system used to control them, so they will not be described in further detail herein.
  • [0039]
    The bed sections 24-30 and actuators allow the bed to be reconfigured from the lying position shown in FIG. 1 to a sitting position as shown in FIG. 2 and also into many other configurations, including, for example one in which the knee break at hinge 36 is raised and the leg rest section 24 also raised upwardly to keep a patient's legs substantially horizontal. For this latter configuration, there is provided an actuator which is coupled to the leg rest section 24 to effect such movement. This actuator arrangement is well known in the art so is not described in further detail herein.
  • [0040]
    FIG. 2 also shows a sub-frame 42 which supports the platform 20, typically by being attached to the seat section 28 and also to the actuators and to a control unit. The sub-frame 42 also supports the struts 44 which raise and lower the sub-frame 42 and hence the platform 20 relative to the base 12. This sub-frame is the subject of the applicant's co-pending British patent application number 0523174.1 filed the same day as the present application and does not need to be described in further detail herein.
  • [0041]
    Referring now to FIG. 3, there is shown a perspective view of the bed assembly 10 of FIG. 2 but which omits for the purposes of clarity the mattress support panels 50-56, the head board 16, the foot board 18, the patient retention panels 80, 82 and a number of other components shown in FIG. 2.
  • [0042]
    The transverse struts 40 which depend from the frame 22 are clearly visible in this Figure. They are provided in number and in location where support is needed for the mattress support panels 50-56 and which allow good access to the bed components underlying the platform 20, as will be more apparent from a consideration of FIG. 4. In this embodiment, there are provided three transverse struts 40 in the back rest section 30, in light of the greater weight supported by this section of the bed, and two struts 40 in each of the other sections 24-28. Of course, it is possible to provide just two struts in the section 30 if these are made sufficiently strong.
  • [0043]
    The back rest section 30, the thigh rest section 26 and the leg rest section 24 are also provided with longitudinally extending strengthening struts 41 between two adjacent transverse struts 40.
  • [0044]
    It is preferred that the transverse struts 40 are generally rectangular in cross-section as this provides a secure coupling with the snap fasteners provided on the underside of the mattress support panels 50-56.
  • [0045]
    FIG. 3 also shows two of the actuators 43 used for moving the frame sections 24-30. As can be seen, these are secured to the sub-frame 42.
  • [0046]
    Referring now to FIG. 4, this shows the bed features of FIG. 3 in plan view with the frame 20 in a flat configuration. It can be seen that the provision of readily removable mattress support panels 50-56 and of support struts 40, 41, rather than a solid non-removable flat base, provides good access to the components of the bed 10 underlying the frame 22. In this case, the actuators 43 are readily visible and accessible from above the bed 10 through the frame 22, as well as other components such as the control unit (not visible) typically provided in such bed assemblies. This enables servicing of these components from above the bed, that is without having to turn the bed onto its side or upside down.
  • [0047]
    FIGS. 5A and 5B show a detail of the foot section 24 of the frame 22, with its mattress support panel 56 fitted. The end of the foot section 24 is extendable. This is achieved by providing the end strut 110 with first and second parallel rods or tubes 112, 114 either side thereof. These rods have a transverse shape which corresponds to the internal shape of the struts 116, 118 forming the foot rest section 24, so as to be slidable therein as shown in FIGS. 5A and 5B. As will be apparent from FIG. 5A, when the foot rest section 24 is in its extended condition, the rods 112, 114 continue the side wall of the frame 22, thereby retaining the side support surfaces complete around the whole of the frame 22.
  • [0048]
    First and second latches or locks 120 are provided for locking each rod 112 in either the retracted or in the extended positions. The latches 120 could simply be sprung pins fitting into appropriate apertures or bores in the rods 112, 114 or could be screw locks which tighten against the rods 112. The type of latch or lock is not important.
  • [0049]
    Referring now to FIG. 6, there is shown in plan view in schematic form the arrangement of the mattress support panels 50, 52 of the bed of FIGS. 1 and 2. The support panel 50, which forms the back rest section of the bed 10, includes a first end wall 62 and an opposing end wall 64. The mattress support panel 52, which forms the seat portion of the bed 10, includes a first end wall 66 and a second end wall 68. The walls 62 and 66 are adjacent one another, as shown in FIG. 6.
  • [0050]
    When the bed is in a flat position, depicted by the solid lines in FIG. 3 and as shown in FIG. 1, the spacing between the two panels 50, 52 is shown as distance d, which can be any suitable distance which will not adversely affect the support of a patient on a mattress laid over the panels 50-56. The distance d will typically be a few centimetres, often around 10 cm or so.
  • [0051]
    On the other hand, when the support panel 50 is pivoted to a raised patient sitting position as shown in FIG. 2, the distance between the end walls 62, 66 of the panels 50, 52 respectively increases to the distance D shown in FIG. 6. It can be seen that distance D is considerably larger than the distance d when the two panels are lying flat.
  • [0052]
    There are two primary factors which cause the increase in the distance between the two end walls 62, 66. The first is the curvature of the panels 50, 52 and the fact that the pivoting point is at the sides of the panel. The centre of the panels 50, 52 are substantially below the sides, thereby causing this increase in distance during the pivoting motion. The second factor is that the pivot 32 is raised above even the highest points of the panels 50, 52 (that is above their raised sides) which causes additional movement away from the panel 52 including at the ends 70.
  • [0053]
    This increase in spacing is advantageous because when a person moves from a lying position to a sitting position the person stretches at the point of bending (that is between the patient's back and lower thighs). Thus, this arrangement follows the extension of the person and therefore makes it much more comfortable to a patient. Prior art beds, which have the pivot points substantially at the level of the mattress support sections and which have mattress support sections which are substantially flat, do not benefit from this increase in spacing between the sections and therefore from any increase in the effective length of the mattress support base. They can provide a pinching effect on the patient.
  • [0054]
    The reader will appreciate that the two factors mentioned above could be provided independently of one another, although with reduced lengthening effect.
  • [0055]
    FIG. 7 shows a plan view of the bed of FIG. 1 in the chair configuration, while FIG. 8 shows an enlarged view of the head end of the bed of FIG. 7. A comparison of FIG. 1 with FIGS. 7 and 8 shows the increase in spacing between the edges 62, 66 of the panels 50, 52 from the lying to the seating positions.
  • [0056]
    There is an other advantageous feature of this structure of the platform 20, this being at the thigh section 54. As can be seen in FIG. 1, the spacing, D′, between the thigh rest panel 54 and the leg rest panel 56 is relatively large when the platform 20 is in the flat configuration. However, when the hinge 36 is raised to form the knee break, this spacing is reduced substantially, to d′ as shown in FIG. 9. This reduction in spacing causes the lower surface of the mattress to compress longitudinally as a result of a shortening in the overall length of the portions 54, 56 of the mattress support. This enables the mattress to maintain contact with the rear of a patient's knee. It has been found that if there is no such compression of the mattress longitudinally, as would be the case if the spacing between the thigh and leg rest sections 54, 56 were to remain the same, the mattress becomes stretched over the knee break and can lose contact with the rear of a patient's knees, thereby losing the supporting effect it should provide.
  • [0057]
    FIG. 10 shows the mattress support panels 50-56 in the chair configuration of the bed. The spacings between the panels in this configuration can be clearly seen. There is, however, another feature evident in FIG. 10, related to the movement of the thigh rest section 54. As can be seen in FIG. 10, with the thigh rest section pivoted upwardly as shown, the rear edge 111 of the thigh rest 54 is higher than the front edge 113 of the seat section. This is caused by the fact that the rear edge 111 is longitudinally spaced from the hinge 34, along the length of the bed. As a result of this, pivoting of the frame section 28 about the hinge 34 will cause the panel 54 not only to pivot but also to rise relative to its rest position. This rising of the thigh rest panel 54 provides better support to the underside of a patient's thigh than do existing configurable bed assemblies.
  • [0058]
    Referring now to FIG. 11, the bed 10 is shown in the lying configuration, in order better to see the patient retention panels 80, 82 for retaining the patient on the bed. The panels 80, 82 are typically made from a plastics material or from metal covered with a plastics cladding.
  • [0059]
    The patient retention panel 80 is coupled to the frame member 30 forming the back rest section of the bed 10 and is able to move therewith, as will be apparent in particular from FIG. 2. The patient retention panel 82 is coupled to the seat section 28 of the frame 22 and in practice does not move as the seat section 28, in this embodiment, is the one stationary member of the frame 22 (although it does, of course, move with the frame 22 as this is raised, lowered and tilted).
  • [0060]
    As is best appreciated from FIG. 2, when the back rest section 30, 50 is pivoted upwardly towards a patient sitting position, the patient retention panel 80 will move over the retention panel 82. For this purpose, the panel 80 includes a concave facing surface 92 which faces a convex surface 94 of the retention panel 82. As the panel 80 moves upwardly and around the panel 82, the surface 92 slides over the surface 94 retaining substantially the same gap g between the two surfaces 92 and 94. As a result of this, the combination of the two panels 80, 82 provides a substantially continuous support surface throughout the movement of the retention panel 80, without creating between the two panels any constriction which could trap part of a patient's body or that of hospital staff.
  • [0061]
    As shown in particular in FIGS. 11 and 12, there can be seen in schematic form an example of a preferred embodiment of unit 100 for supporting a keypad (not shown) which allows the patient to operate the various functions of the bed 10.
  • [0062]
    In this embodiment, the keypad unit 100 is provided with a protruding member 102 which extends beyond the general outer perimeter of the patient support panel 80 and in a direction towards the foot end of the bed 10. The unit 100 is fifted to the patient retention panel 80 so as to move with that panel upon movement of the back rest section 30, 50, in such a manner that it maintains its position relative to the backrest section 30, 50 and hence relative to a patient lying on the bed 10. The unit 100 is located so as to be easily accessible by a patient on the bed by means of the patient's hand at that side of the bed, as shown in particular in FIG. 6. The position of the unit 100 could be described as being approximately at the shoulder area of a patient lying or sitting on the bed 10.
  • [0063]
    As can also be seen in FIG. 12, the shape and structure of the unit 10 is such that a patient is able to place his/her fingers on the outer side of the unit 100 and then to operate a keypad (not shown) on the inner/patient side of the unit 100. The patient is therefore able to apply an opposing pressure at the rear side of the unit 100 to the pressure applied when pressing the buttons of the key pad, which in practice stabilises the unit 100. This feature contrasts with the existing keypads provided on the patient support panels, which tend to be difficult to operate because the panels generally have some flexibility to them.
  • [0064]
    The keypad which would be provided in the unit 100 is of a type equivalent to the keypads already used in such beds and therefore is not described in any further detail herein.
  • [0065]
    Referring in particular to FIG. 11, it is preferred that the unit 100 is fitted to the patient support panel 80 by first and second flanges 104, 106 which can be secured to the panel 80 either by suitable snap fit connections and/or by one or more screws. Within the unit 100 there is provided a plug or socket which fits to a complimentary socket/plug to make the necessary electrical connections between the keypad of the unit 100 and the control system of the bed 10.
  • [0066]
    The preferred structure of the keypad unit 100 facilitates the assembly of the unit 100 to the bed 10 and also enables its easy replacement in case the keypad is in some way damaged during use or shipping.
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3013281 *23 Apr 195919 Dec 1961Steiner Jesse EInvalid bed
US3051965 *27 Feb 19614 Sep 1962Ekstrom Raymond MSupine bed
US3209379 *12 Dec 19635 Oct 1965Stauble ReinholdBed spring-frame
US3355695 *25 May 196528 Nov 1967Overesch Joseph EHinge for carrying electric circuits
US4183015 *26 Jun 19788 Jan 1980Hill-Rom Company, Inc.Side guard for bed including means for controlling remote electrical devices
US4805265 *5 Aug 198721 Feb 1989Siemens AktiengesellschaftHinge for fastening swivelably arranged electrotechnical appliances
US5398357 *3 Jun 199321 Mar 1995Hill-Rom Company, Inc.Hospital bed convertible to chair configuration
US5634532 *18 Apr 19953 Jun 1997Bucher Management AgBrake system for traveling container
US5732423 *4 Aug 199531 Mar 1998Hill-Rom, Inc.Bed side rails
US5862551 *28 Oct 199626 Jan 1999France Bed Co., Ltd.Bed apparatus
US5987673 *7 Nov 199623 Nov 1999Ferno-Washington, Inc.Undercarriage extension
US6212713 *9 Aug 199910 Apr 2001Midmark CorporationExamination table with sliding back section
US6321878 *5 Mar 199927 Nov 2001Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Caster and braking system
US6389622 *3 Aug 200021 May 2002Chiou-Feng HerHospital bed
US6486792 *14 Apr 199926 Nov 2002Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Communication and bed function control apparatus
US6505365 *10 Dec 199914 Jan 2003Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Hospital bed mechanisms
US6789280 *26 Dec 199614 Sep 2004Gerald S. PaulArticulated medical bed
US7406729 *29 Jul 20055 Aug 2008Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Patient support having powered adjustable width
US7533429 *2 May 200819 May 2009Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Lift system for hospital bed
US20020178502 *25 May 20015 Dec 2002Michael BeasleyAdjustable platform for a bed
US20040177443 *26 Mar 200416 Sep 2004Scott SimmondsBed siderail having a latch
US20040181876 *29 Jan 200423 Sep 2004Paramount Bed Co., Ltd.Bendable bottom member for bed
US20050028281 *17 Sep 200410 Feb 2005France Bed Co., Ltd.Rising-type bed apparatus and mattress
US20050039263 *25 Nov 200224 Feb 2005Reed Alexander HeathcliffAdjustable beds or recliners
US20070220677 *5 Dec 200527 Sep 2007Eckhart DewertMotorized adjustable support apparatus for the upholstery of furniture for lying or sitting, in particular a bed mattress
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8418290 *11 Jan 201116 Apr 2013Ruoey Lung Enterprise Corp.Motorized bed preventing a person from being jammed
US20120174316 *11 Jan 201112 Jul 2012Lung-Tan ShihMotorized Bed Preventing A Person From Being Jammed
US20130160207 *23 Dec 201127 Jun 2013Shiou-Jhen WUMedical bed
Classifications
U.S. Classification5/619, 5/613
International ClassificationA47B7/00, A61G7/002, A47C21/08, A61G7/015, A47C19/00, A47C20/08
Cooperative ClassificationA61G7/0514, A61G7/0524, A61G7/0507, Y10T16/554, Y10T74/20888, A61G7/015
European ClassificationA61G7/015, A61G7/05S
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
18 Jun 2008ASAssignment
Owner name: HUNTLEIGH TECHNOLOGY LIMITED, UNITED KINGDOM
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:HAYES, STEPHEN;HOLLYOAK, STEPHEN;REEL/FRAME:021111/0901
Effective date: 20080118