Traditionally, gurneys have been reserved for the healthcare setting. However, these mobility aids are becoming increasingly common in the home and can provide the user with a host of benefits.
A gurney is like a bed and a chair on wheels. It is adjustable, comfortable, and can take the user from room to room. In addition, many gurneys are waterproof, so they can be rolled into the shower and allow the patient to meet their basic hygiene needs.
These contraptions are not cheap, and they aren’t for everyone, but when needed they can make life considerably easier for caregivers and patients alike.
What to Look for in a Shower Gurney Bed
To make sure you buy the best shower gurney for yourself or your loved one, look out for the following features:
All mobility products have a maximum weight, and this typically varies from 300 lbs. to 500 lbs., although some can go as low as 200 lbs. and as high as 1,000 lbs. Always look at the weight capacity and make sure the patient does not exceed it.
Think about the length and width of the gurney. Consider the size of the user, as well as the rooms in their home. The sizes can vary considerably, and dimensions are always displayed clearly on the product description.
Make and Comfort
What is the gurney made from and how comfortable is it? You want something that will last, something that is waterproof and rust-resistant, and something that will not weaken, slow, or degrade over time.
If the patient is going to be spending long periods of time in the gurney, it needs to be ergonomic and soft, lest they suffer from pressure sores and a host of aches and pains.
Does the gurney have drop-arms, can the caregiver access the patient with ease? These are key considerations. In addition, those arms need to operate just as smoothly when wet as they do when dry, and these mechanisms should last for years to come.
You’re going to be using the gurney in the shower, so it needs to be efficient at repelling water and it needs to do this quickly. You don’t want the patient lying in water, nor do you wait to trail that water around the room and the house.
As always, make sure you consider the price in relation to the quality. Don’t opt for the cheapest one you can get your hands on and don’t assume that a high price tag means high quality.
The Best Shower Gurneys for Seniors
What follows is a list of the best shower gurney beds for seniors. These are sold across a host of online platforms and can also be purchased from brick-and-mortar dealers. They are not cheap, but if you have room in your budget, they are some of the best options for meeting daily hygiene needs.
Consider the features outlined above when choosing your shower gurney bed and make sure you read customer reviews.
Lumex PVC Shower Bed Stretcher
Available for less than $1,500, with some retailers charging as little as $1,100, this is a well-made PVC shower gurney with a full-length drain pan that catches water and rust-resistant materials that prevent damage.
The headrest can be fixed to three different positions and there is a durable and easy-clean cover, as well as strong railings that have a drop-down feature for easy access.
Smirthwaite Mobi-Height Adjustable Shower Trolley
At over $4,000, this option is definitely not cheap, but if you’re looking for something sturdy, strong, and built-to-last, and you’ll willing to pay for it, this gurney could be what you need.
It provides easy access and mobility for caregivers, with complete comfort and security for users.
MJM Amazon Products
This is an unusual inclusion, as we’re talking about a manufacturer and not a product. MLM International sells a number of mobility products at Amazon.com. These products are often relatively basic, but they more than meet your needs and are very affordable.
As far as shower gurney beds are concerned, you can pick one up for between $500 and $1,000, and these are sturdy, well-built, and well-reviewed beds for the most part. The problem is, at the time of writing, all of these are listed as “Out of Stock.”
We expect that this is a short-term issue and is one of the many fallouts of the chaos caused by 2020, so it may not last for long. If the options above are out of your budget, keep your eye on these products and see if you can find one within your price range.
Focus on the build quality and the price, and make sure you check the reviews as well.