The Significance of Choosing the Correct Medical Caster Wheels
Medical environments create unusual challenges for the design of shelving, gurneys, beds, carts, and other movable pieces of furniture. Clinics and hospitals are dynamic environments where medical professionals must perform their different roles in tandem with one another.
Medical caster wheels might not have the imposing presence of the beeping heart monitors and flashy diagnostic equipment. However, they are essential to ensuring patient health and workplace safety. Any misstep could interfere with medical procedures, introduce bacteria into sterile areas, or prevent a medical professional from reaching a critical patient in an emergency.
Caster Central provides a wide selection of medical casters. Each caster includes the high standards that medical professionals and insurance companies depend on to reduce risks and achieve the best outcomes.
Patients who suffer negative outcomes, or their loved ones, will often seize on any evidence that the hospital or facility bears financial and legal responsibilities, including caster and wheel failures. Therefore, keep the following roles for medical casters in mind so you can choose the caster type and materials that meet your needs.
If you need help choosing the right medical caster wheels, call Caster Central to speak with an expert representative.
Gently and Quietly Transport Patients with Appropriate Casters
Patients in hospitals cannot afford to suffer impacts and high g-forces when they travel on gurneys or mobile hospital beds. Even minor jostling could worsen the condition of a patient with a spinal injury, head trauma, fracture, or other internal injuries.
Noise from gurneys or carts can cause problems in trauma centers, emergency rooms, and operating rooms. If EMTs, nurses, or surgeons, cannot hear one another over squeaky wheels and clattering carts, they might make mistakes and become distracted. The result is a reduction in the quality of care.
Navigate Hospital Corridors with Ease
Hospital corridors are crowded and hectic places in the best of times. Funding shortfalls and increased demand for medical services often force doctors, nurses, and orderlies to work in close quarters. Unless your medical equipment can move smoothly, overburdened medical facilities can grind to a halt.
Casters for medical applications should have lubricated bearings. These bearings allow wheeled furniture to pivot quickly in a narrow turning circle. Moreover, casters with dual-bearing raceways offer unparalleled motion by reducing friction at the point where the caster swivels.
Avoid Collisions and Breakage
Stuck casters can cause wheeled carts and conveyances to become unstable and difficult to control. In a medical environment, a caster that sticks for even a moment could trigger a disaster. Therefore, make sure that any casters you buy for your medical facility are durable and reliable with an appropriate load rating.
Furthermore, choose casters with quality ball bearings. Such casters will not fail when medical personnel and their patients depend on them.
Keep Gurneys, Beds, and Shelves Secure
Use gurneys and beds with strong brakes that lock the wheels securely in place. A well-functioning locking mechanism is essential for safely transferring patients. This feature is also necessary for positioning carts beside patient beds and stabilizing patients for emergency treatment.
You cannot afford to lose control of your equipment even for a moment. Choose casters that contain an easy-to-use, long-lasting braking mechanism.
Reduce Strain on Medical Personnel
Doctors, nurses, and orderlies often work long shifts that require them to spend hours on their feet. Lifting, positioning, and transferring patients puts strain on knees and backs. Reducing stress on the medical professionals can improve patient outcomes, increase retention rates, and reduce the cost of health problems among medical personnel.
Overall, smoothly functioning casters can help medical personnel adopt ergonomic postures when moving wheeled equipment.
Keep Hospital, Clinic, and Office Costs Low
The medical equipment for any medical facility should provide maximum performance without taking funds away from other essentials. New materials and construction techniques make high-quality, medical-grade components more affordable than ever. You don't have to sacrifice quality or patient care to keep health care costs down.
Handle a Variety of Floor Conditions
In emergency situations, personnel might have to use carts and equipment beyond their typical range. Medical equipment should be versatile and suited for many floor types, including:
- Smooth corridors within the facility
- Rooftop helipads
- Potentially rough or uneven pavement in the parking areas outside the facility
Medical facilities have many obstacles that could inadvertently cause trauma to patients while doctors rush them in for treatment. Therefore, medical caster wheels should be able to absorb impact energy when they cross a door threshold or traverse a rough patch of flooring.
Promote Proper Hygiene with Bacteria-Resistant Casters
Casters made from porous materials can soak up fluids. As a result, they become breeding grounds for potentially hazardous bacteria. Fortunately, stainless steel and polymer casters make the equipment easy to sanitize.
Use Metal-Free Casters for Diagnostic Applications
Some medical procedures, such as magnetic resonance imaging, utilize magnetic fields. These technologies can give false results due to magnetic fields near testing equipment. In facilities that house sensitive diagnostic equipment, it can be beneficial to use non-magnetic carts and gurneys.
Use Color and Form to Keep Error Rates Down
One challenge that medical professionals face is finding the right equipment at the moment they need it. Doctors, nurses, and other staff wear uniforms so that colleagues can find them and identify them at a glance.
Relatedly, the delay of a minute or two when a new employee shows up with the wrong medical cart could have disastrous consequences. Give your staff the tools they need to prevent errors. Why not use color to help them identify equipment carts?
Casters come in a variety of shapes and colors. If various parts of your facility use different carts, shelves, and other furniture, use color-coded caster wheels to confirm each cart’s location. Place colored lines on the floor to direct cars to the right places without the risk of mistakes.
Consider Twin Wheel Casters
Twin wheel casters are a popular choice for medical caster wheels. Each caster anchors two wheels to the caster plate or stem. Therefore, the se wheels can rotate independently of each other.
Some versions of twin-wheel casters have a hood that covers the wheels, protecting them from spills or splashes.
Twin-wheel casters have numerous advantages over single-wheel alternatives. First, they have greater maneuverability because the individual wheels can spin at different rates during a turn. Furthermore, their weight capacity is higher because the weight spreads out over twice as many wheels.
Order Specialized Casters for Medical Applications
Medical casters use wheel and caster designs that make them well-suited to the health care industry. The caster wheels resist bacteria, are easy to clean, and roll smoothly.
Buying casters specifically tailored for medical facilities can go a long way to protect your facility. Medical casters offer legal security if a mechanical failure contributes to the injury or death of a patient. By choosing high-quality casters, you can reassure patients, staff, and stakeholders that you prioritize safety.
Caster Central Is Your Source for Medical-Grade Casters
The stakes of equipment failure are far higher in a medical context versus a retail or office context. Health care providers cannot afford to take chances with cheap equipment, including caster wheels.
Caster Central stocks an unrivaled inventory of medical caster wheels from the most trusted caster manufacturers. Browse our online inventory and call us at 1 (800) 445-4082 to order products. We can also help you learn more about the history of caster wheels and explore the future of custom design for medical caster wheels.