Page last updated at 18:07 GMT, Tuesday, 26 May 2009 19:07 UK

Shortage prompts crutch amnesty

Person on crutches
The trust believes many pairs of crutches are forgotten about

Patients are being urged to return crutches they no longer use as supplies at two Teesside hospitals run critically low.

North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust said it lends about 5,000 pairs of crutches each year.

But it said its supplies have almost run out, particularly at the University Hospital of North Tees, in Stockton.

Now patients who have finished with their crutches are being urged to hand them back in.

Accident and emergency consultant Alex Thomas said: "We know that returning crutches is the last thing on anyone's mind when they're properly back on their feet again after breaking a leg or foot.

"However we need the crutches for other patients so we're asking people to come and hand them in at accident and emergency.

"I'm sure many people put them away in a cupboard and forget all about them, but it's always worth reminding people to just have a look around the house and hand them in if they've inadvertently hung on to them."

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NHS trust gains foundation status
03 May 09 |  Tees
Hospitals launch crutches amnesty
13 Aug 07 |  Tees

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