Bertie is a 3 year old boy living with Batten Disease – a very rare and neurological degenerative condition causing seizures, total lack of mobility, blindness and childhood dementia. This means that Bertie needs full support with day to day tasks, such as washing and bathing.
Bertie’s family recently had their house adapted to suit Bertie’s needs and one of the life-changing adaptations was the installation of his Kiva Height-Adjustable Bath.
The Kiva is specialist bath; designed, manufactured and installed by Astor-Bannerman, to cater for people with complex needs. Bertie’s bespoke bath gives him and his family the support they require to enjoy bath time together.
We spoke to Bertie’s mum, Mimi, to hear about the difference the Kiva has made to Bertie and the family:
‘He’s comfortable now, bath time before the Kiva could be dangerous due to Bertie’s seizures and lack of head control. We used to try height-adjustable seats and he kept slipping down into the water. The Kiva is a height-adjustable bath, meaning that Bertie can lie back comfortably and we can bathe him at a height which doesn’t strain our backs’
Mimi says that Kiva does not only provide vital support for Bertie, but its additional features allow him to have a relaxing bathing experience:
‘He really loves the bubbles, you can see his enjoyment when they’re on, the sensory feeling of the jets is relaxing for his muscles and help with his spasms’
The Kiva has also been fitted with an Astor-Bannerman patented Neatfold Stretcher, to make changing and transfer easier for both user and carer:
‘The Neatfold Stretcher is incredibly helpful, it saves on space because it folds away neatly and Bertie doesn’t get cold and uncomfortable. He can be hoisted up straight from the bath and onto the stretcher to be dried and changed’
The Kiva Bath is not only practical, but fits in seamlessly within the family home, designed to look like a typical bath and be usable for the entire family. Bertie’s 5 year old brother is especially keen on their new bath, loving his own bath time and inviting friends over to show off the Kiva’s LED colour changing light system and air spa feature.
Mimi says that the Kiva has made a huge difference and she would definitely recommend it to families who have children with additional needs. She knows that a lot of families don’t have adapted baths and she thinks bathing has real benefits for children with complex disabilities:
‘It gives them the chance to have a swim and relax in the water as often public pools aren’t fully accessible.’
Mimi was really impressed with the service Astor-Bannerman provided, our expert advisors taking the time to explain to the Disability Grants Officer how the bath worked and how it would make a positive impact on Bertie’s life. She felt that it was great to have a representative making their case and she was touched that Astor-Bannerman had gone the extra mile to help the family.
For more information on the Kiva Height Adjustable Bath or to see our full range of bathing solutions, visit www.astorbannerman.co.uk, call 01242 820820 or email email@example.com