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Support Surface System for Person Support Apparatus

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000245487D
Publication Date: 2016-Mar-11
Document File: 7 page(s) / 218K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Relates generally to a control system for a person support apparatus and more specifically, but not exclusively, to a support surface system for a person support apparatus.

Steve Hankins shankins@rshc-law.com

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Support Surface System for Person Support Apparatus

The present disclosure relates generally to a control system for a person support apparatus and more specifically, but not exclusively, to a support surface system for a person support apparatus.

Generally, a healthcare facility is equipped with a number of person support apparatuses, such as beds, stretchers, tables, or the like. These person support apparatuses are configured to support a person under medical guidance (patient). The patient support apparatuses, such as hospital beds, and some beds used at home can have inflatable support surfaces, such as mattresses. Such support surfaces can be adapted to support the patient and to provide adjustable firmness characteristics. These support surfaces can include one, or several, bladders that are inflated by a compressor, to different pressures to adjust the firmness in selective regions or zones of the support surface. In other words, such support surfaces can be inflated and deflated to control pressure in the bladders. The pressure in the bladders correlates to the interface pressure between the skin of the patient supported on the support surface and the support surface. Prolonged exposure to excessive pressure and/or skin shear can tend to break down the skin and form pressure ulcers, also known as bed sores.

One embodiment of a support surface disclosed herein maintains an optimal pressure by detecting a pressure drop, due to patient repositioning or a leak in the bladders, and reacts by re-inflating the bladders to a specified level. This action can occur at any time, depending on the age of the support surface and of the compressor. This re-refilling can be noisy and can wake up a sleeping patient, or keep him or her from falling asleep, thereby adversely impacting patient experiences and perhaps even the healing process if the patient cannot get adequate rest.

One embodiment of present disclosure is related to a support surface system of a person support apparatus. The support surface system includes a support surface having a plurality of bladders, a compressor, a time source, and a controller. The support surface is inflated and deflated to maintain a bladder pressure between a pre-determined maximum pressure and a pre-determined minimum pressure. The compressor is connected to the support surface and is configured to inflate the plurality of bladders. The time source is configured to indicate real time. Further, the controller is in control communication with the compressor and the time source. The controller is configured to detect a pre-determined time interval based on signals from the time source. The controller then initiates a rest mode mechanism on detection of the pre-determined time interval. In the rest mode mechanism, the controller signals the compressor to inflate the support surface as the bladder pressure reaches a minimum threshold pressure, which is below the pre-determined minimum pressure. Also, the controller...