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What are accessible Changing Places and why are they important?

Standard toilets and accessible WCs do not meet the needs of all people with disabilities. For example, people with serious impairments such as spinal injuries, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis or multiple learning disabilities require extra facilities that are not provided in standard toilets or accessible WCs.  That’s why accessible changing places are important.

Changing places facilities are combined toilet, shower and changing rooms specially designed for use by people with complex and multiple impairments/disabilities that require the help of up to two carers, with extra space and facilities to allow them to use the toilet.  Changing places need to be suitably sized (4 metres by 3 metres) and need to be fitted with an over-head tracked hoist system to allow carers to hoist and move the person within the facility, a changing bench, shower and peninsular WC. Full details of the requirements for changing places sanitary accommodation are given in section 12.7 and Figure 58 of BS 8300:2009.

Changing places are needed by thousands of people with disabilities who need support to use the toilet. Without these facilities, carers are forced to use standard toilets or standard accessible toilets to change people with severe disabilities that are inadequate in terms of their size and provision of facilities. Without the provision of changing places people are unable to go out, or carers are forced to change people with disabilities on dirty toilet floors. The provision of changing places will allow people with disabilities and their carers to visit a building knowing that they can access toilet facilities that meets their needs.

Buildings that should have changing places are large buildings used by the public such as;

If you would like further information or assistance in relation to changing places, please do not hesitate to contact one of our team on 01-4151285 or e-mail [email protected].