New board to make life-saving swimming pool rescues in South Yorkshire

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New equipment designed to make swimming pool rescues at Park Rehabilitation Centre quicker and easier has been funded by the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity.

The centre’s new pool extraction board will replace a much older model and means swimmers who become unwell while in the rehabilitation centre’s hydrotherapy pool can be removed as quickly as possible.

The new design from the Royal Life Saving Society also means just two members of staff are needed to evacuate anyone who falls ill.

Colleagues at the rehabilitation centre, which welcomes members of the public as well as patients from The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust, will be undergoing further training before the new equipment is introduced in the New Year.

Adam Hurrell, Centre Coordinator, said: “Our patients tend to be recovering from musculoskeletal injuries or a stroke. They may have long term conditions which they undertake rehabilitation sessions for or manage with regular exercise. Members of the public also use our pool and are usually previous patients who feel reassured there are trained pool staff on standby if needed.

“This equipment is absolutely essential for us if someone feels poorly, collapses or falls unconscious while in the pool.

“The board’s new design means the safety straps are more durable, it’s lighter and easier to carry so we can get people out of the water quickly instead of having to wait for more staff to help or for paramedics to arrive. Fewer lifeguards are also needed to use the board in an emergency situation which means they can help any other swimmers in the pool who might be distressed.

“We know the benefits swimming can have on people’s health and wellbeing, particularly for those who are recovering from illnesses or injuries which require gentle exercise, so we’re really proud to be able to make it as safe as possible.”

Gabby Atmarow, Chair of the Charitable Funds Committee, added: “The new pool extraction board at Park Rehab is a wonderful example of how your fundraising can really make a difference to patients in the community as well as at Rotherham Hospital. It means we can replace a piece of equipment with an enhanced, more modern and lighter version. This provides greater benefits to both patients and staff and we’re delighted to be able to fund it.”

For more information about how you can support the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity please contact Suzanne Rutter on 01709 426821 or email Charity@rothgen.nhs.uk