Health board launches ‘zimmer amnesty’ urging public to return unused equipment

A health board has launched a “zimmer amnesty” urging people to return unused walking frames, sticks and crutches as part of a drive to be more environmentally friendly.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) hopes to cut down on the number of nearly-new walking aids which are left unused in people’s homes or thrown away instead of being reused or recycled.

It said the move would also help save money as in the financial year 2018/19 NHSGGC issued around £220,000 worth of walking aids.

These included 9,000 zimmers which cost £13.75 each, 11,000 crutches at a cost of £6.67 per pair and 6,000 walking sticks which are £2.60 each.

Allan Dodds, Allied Health Professional Orthopaedics team lead, NHSGGC, said: “We’re very aware that perfectly good equipment which could help other people is cluttering up peoples’ homes.

“We’re appealing for people to return their unused walking aids to any of our hospitals.

“We have teamed up with Haven Recycle, a local company which cleans and tests the almost new aids for us to ensure they are ready for someone else to use.

“This not only saves the NHS and taxpayers’ money which can be reinvested into patient care, it also supports our commitment to be an environmentally friendly organisation and encourage others to reduce their carbon footprint.”

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