The majority of stretchers on the market today are still heavy, rigid devices that are difficult to store, deploy and repack. With the ever-increasing pressures of clinical governance and the need for effective disinfection and decontamination, many stretchers end up impossible to effectively clean and therefore become, in reality, single use. Designed by Paul Savage OBE, in conjunction with the manufacturer, the Saviour Stretcher range – the Saviour Tactical and the Saviour Technical – is set to change that.
Designed initially for the maritime SAR world, the Saviour Stretcher range has been enhanced to be the solution for all pre-hospital arenas. The stretchers are light, weighing in at less than 5kg, and they roll up and store in a small shoulder carry or rucksack bag. Once deployed and laid flat, the patient is placed onto the Saviour and it is formed around them using the colour coded fastening straps and head hugger system. Not only does the double skin around the spine and the strapping system make for a securely packaged patient, but acts, if required, as a pelvic splint. The stretcher is x-ray translucent and CT friendly yet the design allows the patient’s chest to be accessed easily for CPR, defibrillation, IO insertion or respiratory assessment.
When evacuating the patient using the Saviour, the patient can be dragged by a single operative using the integral drag harnesses, carried by two or four operatives using the soft carry handles, vertically or horizontally hauled from the 200kg rated eyelets (horizontal haul – Saviour Technical only) or even floated out of the scene, as the stretcher is neutrally buoyant. This means it is suitable for confined space rescue, water rescue, vertical and horizontal line rescues, mass casualty rescue and vehicle, air or boat transport. As all materials are resistant to salt water and sand, it works in even the harshest environments. It fits in all basket stretchers so there’s no need to remove from the Saviour for onwards patient transport.
The Saviour takes seconds to restow into its carry bag. Decontamination is simple and effective as the stretcher has been manufactured from sympathetic materials with this in mind. However, should a strap be soiled beyond salvation, every single part of the Saviour is easily available as a spare part, meaning that this becomes a very cost effective, multi-use device.
So next time you are designing a vehicle, kitting out an ambulance or carrying a heavy stretcher over a distance to a scene and wondering why you carry a variety of stretchers for a variety of roles, think how much simpler life will be when you only need to carry one that is small, light and highly effective.