Risk Management in Changing Places

H&S and Risk Management in Changing Places Toilets

The benefits of providing a Changing Places toilet are numerous and go towards improving the lives of thousands of people across the UK. But, as with any publicly provided facility, the proper health and safety assessments must be made.

A Changing Places toilet contains moving equipment and will often be unmonitored for periods of time, so it is down to the facility provider to ensure that provision is safe and the risk of harm is as low as possible.

Risk management should not overshadow the need to install a Changing Places toilet or be a determent. With the correct due diligence and a risk assessment, the benefits of providing a Changing Places toilet far outweigh the risks.

 

Do Changing Places Toilets Need Attendants?

A Changing Places toilet can be utilised by any person with multiple or profound disabilities, but this should be done with the assistance of their chosen carer, or family member.

The Changing Places Consortium explicitly recommend businesses providing a facility do not place responsibility on their staff to assist users with the toilet. It’s reasonable that staff should be educated in the use of the facility and why it is needed – an attendant may also be required to provide access to the toilet (by key or code pad), but they should not assist anyone using the facility in a way which could potentially put themselves, or the user at risk.

If a business chooses to provide an attended to help users with the facility, they have a duty under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 to ensure that the attendant fully understands how to assist a person using the facility and has an appropriate level of training/competence.

Other relevant pieces of legislation to consider if providing an attendant include Manual Handling Operations Regulations (a risk assessment may show that the risks to a possible attendant may be too great to consider reasonable), Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998, and Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998.

Why not attend one of our Changing Places seminars?

Risk Management in Changing Places

To ensure a Changing Places facility is balanced between benefits and risk provided to users, it is recommended a full risk assessment is carried out. Under the Common Law of Negligence, a risk assessment and how you manage risks will show you are giving the appropriate duty of care. It is also recommended you do the following:

  • Not make staff responsible for assisting users with the Changing Places facility.
  • Fit an emergency call button in the toilet and produce a clear management and response policy.
  • Equipment should be fitted and routinely inspected according to the manufacturer’s guidance.
  • Provide signage showing how to use the equipment safely alongside any warning such as maximum weight limits.
  • Not provide hoist slings and make clear that users should use their own slings.
  • Provide information on which type of slings are compatible with the hoist installed.
  • Create a schedule for cleaning and checking the facility.
  • Provide paper towels, bins, and advice on how guests can sanitise the equipment after use.
Download further information about Changing Places.
Depending on what type of business you run and where you are based, there may be a number of funding options available.
To give you an idea of Changing Places costs, we have listed the different CP options below and what you can expect to pay.
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Email: hello@riseadapt.co.uk
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Doncaster
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