New smart gym to benefit spinal cord injury patients

Patients going through rehabilitation for Spinal Cord Injury will benefit from innovative new smart equipment that has been installed at Hampstead Rehabilitation Centre.

Today, on International Spinal Cord Injury Day, Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade said the addition of the state-of-the-art smart equipment will support patients to achieve their rehabilitation goals.

“Strength and fitness training is extremely important for patients undergoing Spinal Cord Injury rehabilitation. It supports recovery and the ability to learn new physical skills required to return to everyday life,” Minister Wade said.

“The addition of this equipment and upgrades will help Hampstead Rehabilitation Centre (HRC) to be a global leader in Spinal Cord Injury rehabilitation and support our patients into the future.

“I’d like to thank the Paraplegic and Quadriplegic Association of South Australia (PQSA) for their generous donation of $180,000 for the equipment, which has been supported by $74,000 of upgrades to fit out the George C. Dunstan weights and conditioning room at HRC.”

Head of Unit for Spinal Cord Injury, Dr Ruth Marshall, said HUR equipment used technology to support the rehabilitation journey.

“The technology allows us to monitor each patient’s program and also provides information about each patient’s rehabilitation progress, which ensures high quality care and safety for patients,” Dr Marshall said.

“The equipment is wheelchair accessible and simple to use, which supports patients to complete effective exercise training, and the information recorded has the potential to support future research programs.

“When people take part in any recreational activities – from wheelchair basketball to music – they are rewarded with better physical and mental health, improved social interaction and increased sense of wellbeing.

“One of the themes of International Spinal Cord Injury Day this year is recreational activities and living life to the fullest, and the new additions to the gymnasium will help support our patients to do that.”

PQSA CEO, Peter Stewart, said the organisation has a long history of providing funding to initiatives that enhance the lives of people with disabilities, particularly those living with Spinal Cord Injury.

“The use of HUR equipment is a first for any spinal cord injury rehabilitation unit in Australia and we have seen the benefits of it used in other disability-friendly facilities interstate,” Mr Stewart said.

“The upgrade to the facilities at the newly named George C. Dunstan Weights and Conditioning Room will significantly contribute to the rehabilitation experience and outcomes of Spinal Cord Injury patients.”

The HUR equipment is specifically designed for rehabilitation using air resistance and smart technology to enable patients to set up their exercises independently by scanning their personalised wrist band.

Supporting upgrades to the facilities include new electronic doors to the court area and weights room, new flooring, upgraded bathrooms and infrastructure to support the smart equipment.

Hampstead Rehabilitation Centre provides care for around 90 inpatients with Spinal Cord Injury each year.

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