img_7347Occupational Therapists have a lot on their plate, so when you have almost 300 of them together at once, you need to make sure their time is well-spent.

This is a challenge that Yorkshire Care Equipment, Harrogate’s premier healthcare equipment supplier, has risen to for four consecutive years. Their YORTRAIN GOLD training day took place on October 10th at the prestigious Pavilions of Harrogate, and was jam-packed with various speakers, breakout sessions, and exhibition stands where professionals could try out the latest equipment available with product specialists.

The day kicked off with tea and coffee on arrival, and a motivational speech from Andy McMenemy. The thought-provoking talk concluded that positive attitude and consistent effort lead to good results – a mindset that could well be adopted in healthcare.

img_7350Tristan Hulbert who coordinated and organised the event, said:

“We love hosting YORTRAIN GOLD because it gives us a chance to give back to the therapists that work hard day-in day-out,” he explained. “The day is all about giving them a break from their regular duties, and coming together to find new ways of improving healthcare and changing people’s lives. We always aim to show a variety of topics within the talks, and we want to get new, high quality products for the delegates to test. Of course another great advantage of this is the fact that it’s all completely free for the attendants – we sort everything out for them, including lunch.”

One of the most popular presentations was delivered by Tracy Conroy, a Tissue Viability Nurse Specialist from Locala. Tracy’s analysis of pressure ulcer care and prevention proved to be an enthralling topic for everyone. Angela Green, OT, said “you can see it emerging in healthcare as a real problem so it was great to get some advice from a specialist.” Framing the issue of prevention over management, Tracy gave helpful tips to OTs who are having to deal with pressure ulcers on a day-to-day basis and detailed the S.S.K.I.N. check system that will help to diagnose the root causes of the ulcer itself. By simply looking at surface, skin inspection, keeping moving, incontinence, and nutrition, healthcare professionals can begin to get a better understanding of how to put a halt to the bed sore crisis.

dscf3031Manual handling consultant Simon Love seems to be a regular at YORTRAIN GOLD events. This year, his talk focused on the ways in which internal force can be used to its full potential and can assist in moving and handling individuals without placing extra strain on oneself. The easy-to-adopt techniques use the professional’s body weight to generate a greater amount of internal force and in turn exert a greater amount of strength. The sink, lock, and rock method was the mantra for the speech, and Simon got everyone out of their seats for a session of pushing, pulling, and contracting.

After a delicious hot lunch, attendees had a couple of hours to meander around the exhibition hall and attend some breakout sessions. With care chairs, ramps, hoists, bed and baths in abundance, there were no stones left unturned by Yorkshire Care Equipment, who boast a showroom filled with high quality equipment. Arguably the most popular stand on the day was the Raizer Emergency Lifting Chair. Demonstrated by Kirsty Dickson from the assessment division of the Yorkshire Care team, delegates were overawed at the simplicity of the design and how it could be operated by just one carer. Kirsty said, “the Raizer really does have the edge on the market. It’s easy to use and assemble with no panic or concern, and it only takes one carer to get a person lifted. It lifts people from the floor, so there’s no worry about straining yourself – it really is revolutionary.”

These hands-on training sessions have always been rather popular with delegates, offering knowledge refreshment on hoist options, moving and handling practices as well as other topics. Much like pressure ulcers, single carer manual handling is becoming more and more prominent for Occupational Therapists. One breakout session leader, Julia Love, recognised this issue and built her talk around the ways in which the caregiver can use their own physicality to subtly prompt the individual to position and push themselves. Julia had big crowds throughout the afternoon and caused a chorus of ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ with her simple techniques.

The final discussions of the day came from Anne Longmore who detailed the shortfalls of Dementia care checklists when it comes to encouraging participation, and Wendy Murphy who got everyone giggling with her despair at the lack of positioning support in healthcare equipment. And so, YORTRAIN GOLD came to a close with the annual prize draw with three very happy attendants winning hampers from Harrogate’s own beloved tea room – Betty’s.

img_7268“Every year we aim to create a better YORTRAIN GOLD than the last,” concluded Tristan, “I’m glad that the immediate feedback from this year’s vent has been ever better than before. And with people Tweeting us using #YORTRAINGOLD2016, we’ve had loads more live interaction with delegates, which has helped tremendously with finding out what people have enjoyed the most. We work alongside 1500 healthcare professionals throughout the North of England on a daily basis. We carry out on-site assessments with specialist equipment, so we know how busy therapists are in their job. Holding events like YORTRAIN GOLD enables us to say a big thank you to everyone who works so tirelessly to improve lives. Days like today also give people a chance to refresh their knowledge, so that we can all work together to give people a better quality of life.”

Established in Leeds in 1972, Yorkshire Care Equipment is one of the most well-established care equipment providers in the North of England. You can see their company video and wide range of products at You can also follow them on Twitter @Yorkshire_Care, and like them on Facebook @YorkshireCareEquipment. Alternatively, the Yorkshire Care Equipment team can be contacted on 01423 799960 or via the email address.