Contract furniture Buying Check-List

Posted by Janet Voigt on Wed, Nov 06, 2013 @ 11:36 AM

Reasons to Buy Contract Vs. Retail Furniture.

When I asked customers about selecting contract-grade furniture, they are often unaware that there was furniture designed for non-residential applications. While the elements of good residential interior design might translate well into a commercial healthcare or group living environment, the furniture and fixtures do not.
Furniture and fixtures for health care and healing environments must not only be comfortable, and attractive, but also prevent falls, encourage mobility, discreetly deal with incontinence and fluids, maintain sterile surfaces and support the latest patient-centered technologies.

So what exactly is contract-grade furniture?
  • Contract-grade furniture is designed and built by specialized manufacturers whose construction methods and materials produce a higher-quality piece of furniture that stands up to heavy use. Additionally, fabrics for contract environments are tested to standards that are not applicable in residential design.
  • Fabric finishes are far more durable than a traditional Scotch-Guard surface treatment and many fabric finishes can handle urine and body fluids without penetrating vulnerable foam and frame components of seating pieces.
  • Contract furniture designs can easily adapt dimensions of seating pieces to accommodate bariatric and limited mobility needs. Reinforced and metal frames can allow up to 800 lb. per seating surface.  Shorter seat depths and higher arm heights on sofas, loveseats and chairs enables mobility by making the physics of taking a person from a seated position to a standing position an easier transition.
  • Many health care facilities are subject to inspection and accreditation standards so making sure that all design elements including furniture and fixtures comply is essential.
  • Patient and staff safety is always a primary concern. Understanding the specific needs of the patient population, staff and visitors is crucial since design needs may include things like managing self-harm risk, preventing assemblies that can be used as weapons, eliminating sharp edges, minimizing tripping or falling risks and optimizing independence are topics that many designers have not had to take into consideration on non-contract projects.
Inexpensive look-alikes cannot possibly have frames and components built to last in a commercial or heavy-use environment.
Always engage a reputable contract furniture dealerwho can help you understand the needs of contract health care and group living facilities so that you and your design project will shine!

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, durable furniture, Contract Furniture


Posted by Janet Voigt on Tue, Oct 08, 2013 @ 09:33 AM
Statistics site obesity in the US at around 33% of the population.

Something for Everybody AND EVERY BODY!


Fortunately, there are more and more bariatric options available from contract furniture providers. Bariatric furniture includes a wide variety of wood, metal and upholstered seating pieces that are designed and tested to hold up to heavier weights then standard furniture pieces.

Adding bariatric furniture to a seating space is not only a necessary option to prevent furniture breakage, but all people deserve the opportunity to use seating with an appropriate width that allows a body fit comfortably.

Truth is that although bariatric seating serves a very practical purpose, constructing furniture to higher weight standards also serves to ensure a highly durable and versatile seating piece that can and will be used by everyone (patients, clients, guests and staff!) regardless of size.

So what exactly does bariatric furniture mean?

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Bariatric, Commercial Lounge Furniture

The Contract Furniture Trendsetter

Posted by Janet Voigt on Mon, Aug 12, 2013 @ 11:27 AM

In the world of ho-hum furniture for health care and facility furniture, things are heating up.

The baby boomers are hitting the health care market en masse for both acute and extended care services. As the country's largest consumer-base, the fifty-plus crowd are not just consumers of health care services, they are also decision-makers for respite care for their aging parents. While cost is a primary driver of choices of health care facilities of all types, aesthetics plays a huge role in the decision process.

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Interior Design Advice of Group Living Facilities, durable furniture, Contract Furniture

The Power of Furniture Designed for Behavioral Healthcare

Posted by Janet Voigt on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 @ 01:50 PM

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Topics: molded plastic Furniture, Health Care Furniture, Adolescent Treatment Centers, anti-contraband furniture, Extreme-Use Furniture, Crate Style Furniture, Behavioral Healthcare Furniture, Outdoor Furniture

The Myth of Bariatric Furniture

Posted by Janet Voigt on Thu, Jan 24, 2013 @ 09:23 AM

"Bariatric" is a broad word that encompasses the needs of people over recommended body weight.


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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Bariatric, Lobby Furniture Furniture for Contract

Back to Basics in Heavy Duty Furniture

Posted by Janet Voigt on Tue, Jan 22, 2013 @ 09:30 AM

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Bariatric, durable furniture, Contract Furniture, Furniture For Incontinence, Contract Bedroom Furniture

What Everyone Ought to Know About Crib Safety Standards

Posted by Janet Voigt on Tue, Jan 08, 2013 @ 01:15 PM

For contract healthcare facilities that serve infants and youth, the end of 2012 marked the beginning of the US Consumer Product Safety Commissions’ (CPSC) new crib safety standards.

All cribs in use in the United States are now required to be compliant with the new Standards 16 CFR 1219 and 16 CFR 1220. Cribs manufactured after July 28, 2011 were constructed to meet the new standards but any crib manufactured prior to that key date likely requires replacement. 

These wide-sweeping regulatory changes mean that child care and health care providers across the country should have replaced existing cribs by 12/31/2012 although it is believed that many facilities did not voluntarily comply – likely because of the high cost of replacing quantities of cribs. States’ Attorneys General have the authority to inspect and enforce the new standards.

So what is different in the new standards?

  • Most notably, the new standards eliminate ay drop side rail cribs. Drop side rails have been available on cribs for decades and had been considered an industry standard. Care providers whno have become used to the convenience of the drop side rail to facilitate reaching in for infants and toddlers can be assured that new models can include hinged access panels or adjustable height mattresses.
  • Additional standards upgrades include heavy, more durable hardware; thicker, stronger slats; and heavier mattress supports.
  • Here is a quick reference highlighting the compliance changes: (see crib safety diagram)

The most reliable way to check for crib compliance on existing cribs:

  • to look at the date of manufacture which is typically affixed to the underside of the crib frame. Cribs manufactured after 07/28/11 should be compliant since the CPSC heavily enforced compliance by US manufacturers and retailers.
  • No drop side rail cribs are permissible so if you are working with drop side cribs you can be assured your cribs do not meet new standards.
  •  Also, decorative elements are no longer acceptable so any cribs with any adornments are not compliant.
  • Other features like stronger slats and mattress supports are not easily distinguished so date of manufacture or a copy of your cribs’ compliance certificates might be the best way to determine whether or not your crib needs replacing.
When considering replacing existing cribs in your facility, always work with a reputable contract furniture seller who can give you the right information on compliance standards. Compliant cribs include portable, folding, wood and metal options and costs are relatively reasonable.

Created on 05/03/12 at 21:55:16   Need Pricing? Click to Get it!

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, healthcare cribs, safety standard, crib safety standardss

How to Use Furniture to Aid Consumer Independence

Posted by Janet Voigt on Mon, Oct 15, 2012 @ 09:44 AM
Incontinence can severely limit patient or consumer independence.

Limited mobility can also be a big obstacle since aiding consumers in their movements from one area to another is demanding on staff time and resources.

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Furniture For Incontinence

5 Creative Ways to Manage Patient Incontinence

Posted by Janet Voigt on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 @ 08:50 AM

Patients and consumers with incontinence create a special kind of demand on staff and direct service providers.

Not only is there risk to the health of patient, but cleaning both the patient, furniture and flooring takes the time and effort of staff trying to manage broad responsibilities. Furniture can often be ruined by bodily fluids that are either not cleaned entirely or due to soaking into hard-to-clean places like the foam and frame.
With the growing demands for WELL-DESIGNED FURNITURE to help care givers manage limited mobility and incontinence, consider these 5 little-known facts that might make life easier for anyone dealing with incontinence:
  • POP-OUT SEATS are by far the most innovative solution for fluid issues. With this design, the entire seat of an upholstered sofa, loveseat or chair “pops” out leaving just an open frame to allow easy mopping and cleaning of fluids. Urine, or any fluid, flows through to the floor and eliminates pooling on upholstery or into wood frames.
  • SELF-DECKING is a technique that uses a length of fluid-proof fabric under upholstered sofa, loveseat or chair cushions that “catches” fluids to prevent them from hitting the floor or soaking into foam and furniture frames. This is typically an inexpensive way to significantly reduce damage caused by urine and fluids.
  • VINYL fABRICS are a fluid-proof upholstery option that is low cost and highly durable. The best news is that vinyl is no longer the sticky, hot plastic-like fabric it was mid-century. Soft and stylish options make it a stand-out choice for incontinence or any furniture in areas that might take a few spills.
  • Many FABRIC TREATMENTS are now readily available on an endless variety of upholstery fabrics. Some treatments, like Crypton, penetrate the entire weave of the fabric, making the entire knit fluid-resistant. This penetration of the treatment makes it far superior to surface treatments that might wear off after repeated cleaning of soiled areas.
  • As an added safe-guard for any upholstery option, fluid-proof liners can be added to almost any contract upholstered furniture. These liners add extra protection for foam that can still be vulnerable to urine and fluids that seep in through fabric, zippers, welting and seams.
The excess demands of occasional or chronic incontinence on caregivers can be stressful, and the added expense of labor to clean fluids adds up. In addition, furniture is at high risk for ruin due to urine or fluids penetrating fabrics, foam and frame components. PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS are available but not widely known.

Consult a trusted Contract Furniture provider for the right advice for your patients, staff and budget.

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Commercial Lounge Furniture, Furniture For Incontinence, Fabric/Upholstered Furniture for Contract, Contract Furniture & Fabric: Making it Last

Quick Tips to Finding the Best Special Needs Furniture Provider

Posted by Janet Voigt on Mon, Jun 25, 2012 @ 02:40 PM

If You Work in a HEALTHCARE FACILITY That Strives to Offer Independent Living to Consumers and Patients, You Already Know that FURNITURE PLAYS A CRITICAL ROLE.

Furniture is not only essential for productive activities and organized dining; the furniture design itself can become an important element in the quest for real independence.

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Topics: Health Care Furniture, Commercial Lounge Furniture, durable furniture, Contract Furniture

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