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Whittan Supporting the NHS

Whittan and our leading brand Link51 have a long and distinguished history in supporting the NHS. April 7th is World Health Day and marks the founding date of the World Health Organisation (WHO) over 75 years ago in 1948 (almost the same age as our industry-leading brand Link51!). As storage experts in healthcare, we are proud to have played even a small role in helping to make the jobs our NHS employees do just that little bit easier.

We look at the ways we have been supporting the NHS with storage that ensure they can operate at optimal efficiency.

Supporting the NHS with storage solutions

Let’s start with storage solutions. Each hospital has its unique requirements whether it's storing confidential paperwork, secure units for medicine or shelving for surgical gowns. That’s before you start considering maximising storage capacities in what could be a very small cupboard.

For the solution to work, it requires a system that has been perfectly tailored for the location. When Link51 was approached by Birmingham Children’s Hospital to create a storage system for their surgical department, these were exactly the challenges they faced. Following the construction of a laparoscopic theatre, their storeroom had lost 35% of its space. Yet to store all their equipment and consumables they needed to increase their storage capacity by 10%.

The only way to make the sums add up was to create a bespoke solution that utilised the space with maximum efficiency. For the project, Link51 supplied and installed two blocks of Stormor mobile shelving for items such as airway and breathing apparatus. The unit removed the need for a permanent aisle between the rows by enabling the shelving to move along tracks on the floor. When an item is required, the particular shelving bay is identified and then an aisle is created by gliding the mobile unit along the track.

For smaller items such as suture equipment, static Stormor shelving was configured with our intuitive range of accessories to create ‘pigeon-hole’ storage. For high-value surgical equipment, two lockable cabinets were also incorporated into the shelving. Euro Shelving was added to the mix to provide extra load capacity for bulky and heavy items such as pre-packed instruction procedure trays.


How lockers support the NHS

In a busy and publicly accessible environment, your staff must know their possessions are safe at all times. After all, how can you do your job properly if you’re worrying about whether your personal are safe? Not ideal if you’re a nurse or a doctor.

Lockers play a critical role in providing this peace of mind. When a fire broke out, completely gutting the female nurses’ central changing room at Ninewells Teaching Hospital on the western edge of Dundee, it created a big problem. The trust needed an immediate solution for their nurses before they could even concentrate on a permanent system. LinkLockers jumped to their rescue by installing a temporary solution before working with the hospital estate staff to design their refurbished changing room.

Finding storage for over 12,000 nurses’ uniforms is a big job. LinkLockers supplied and installed 500 single-door time share lockers operated using a token which nurses acquired via a wall-mounted dispenser. A further 2,000 personal possession lockers, secured by padlocks, were also installed. To improve the layout further, sloping tops were incorporated on the locker runs to prevent material from accumulating.


NHS Patient Records That Never End!

Almost every job in the NHS inevitably involves paperwork. These documents can, at times, hold private and highly sensitive information which spans the lifetime of their patients. Medical records have to be kept securely but the storage must also have the ability to accommodate the growing number of files. Gloucestershire Royal and East Gloucestershire NHS Trust were facing such a problem. Their existing storage was split across two sites and Link51 designed a solution which would work for two different, locations.

At Gloucester Hospital, the documents were located in a temporary, prefabricated building which needed reinforcement work on the floor before installation of the storage system could take place. Work started first on this site, to allow a transfer of documents, before continuing on the Cheltenham site.

At Cheltenham Hospital the records facility is based off-site in a Grade II former Victorian swimming baths. The building featured important architectural elements that Link51 would have to protect and work around. Features included front-divide changing cubicles and yellow brick with black tile courses throughout. In total, 8,850 linear metres of static and mobile shelving were installed at both sites – a significant increase in storage capacity. At Cheltenham, the reduction in mobile bases also created additional picking faces which increased efficiency.


Supporting the NHS

For over 70 years Whittan have been supporting our emergency services to make their storage as efficient as possible. After all, in an emergency, products and supplies must be easy to locate!

Through our range of systems, we have worked closely with the UK’s fire, police and health services to find systems that provide solutions. If you need to create a solution that will maximise your storage (in even the smallest of spaces), we have done it all! Our turnkey service manages your project from beginning to end, delivering a solution that works for your workplace. Even better, we aim to install your products with minimal disruption to the running of your facility. Even better, each storage solution is coated in an ActiveCoat antimicrobial coating.


We recognise the vital role healthcare professionals play in delivering world-class care and treatment to communities across the UK and with our innovative storage solutions we ensure they have the tools they need to deliver exceptional care.

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