An Internal Standard WashPod temporary disabled wetroom has given a young man with Long Covid a bit of comfort and independence at a time when he is feeling particularly vulnerable.

Gabe, like many other young people, caught Covid in October 2021, having just turned 16 years.

His mother, Sarah says “He was a hugely fit and sporty boy – never off his bike; a rugby playing, gym-going typical 16 year old”.

Everyone thought it would pass in a week or so, but by Christmas he was out of school, sport and socialising as he was badly affected by fatigue, muscle weakness, headaches, nausea, POTS (Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome), facial nerve pain and rashes.

Gabe “muddled through 2022” with ups and downs but by the start of 2023 had gone downhill and was being tested for potential autoimmune disease and other triggered latent diseases. In April he started having seizures, the first of which left him paralysed from the waist down.

Two months of lifting and carrying started, with his “super-strong” cousin carrying him up and downstairs at the start and end of each day. There was only a downstairs toilet and getting Gabe in and out of that during the day was a tricky two-person job and sometimes ended up with him sliding onto the floor.

“I found WashPod online whilst Googling anything to help” says Sarah. “The huge appeal was the temporary nature of WashPod. We are hiring this unit as we are really hoping that Gabe will get better and we can say goodbye to it!  We have thought about getting a full bathroom put in but the lead time, brain power and energy to sort that out made it unworkable. We needed a solution that was ready to go and required a ‘yes please’ and nothing more.”

Sarah did consider a through-floor lift but the house layout is not ideal and the washroom space upstairs is still too tight for a wheelchair so they would be back to having to cope with the manual lifting.

Sarah and Gabe were at the hospital when the Dignity Access team installed the WashPod in just 7 hours, but they’re both very pleased with the result.

“Everyone from Dignity Access has always been very helpful and timely. Having the WashPod now means that Gabe is 100% downstairs and he can transition himself from his wheelchair or shower chair in and out of the WashPod easily. There is no more of the precarious lifting which is so important for his dignity and our stress levels”.