Adjustable Electric Beds

Last updated: 
1 October 2020

RAP Schedule Number

AB01 [refer to RAP Schedule]

Definition

An adjustable bed refers to a single or king single, electronically operated, bed with position adjustments to the backrest and leg rest area, and/or adjustable height.

DVA Health Advisers consider single beds (including king single beds) to be most appropriate as they allow for ease of access for attending health providers and carers, particularly nurses.

A companion bed refers to a non-adjustable detachable bed for partners, designed to be paired with an adjustable bed.  They are detachable to allow ease of access for attending health providers and carers.

Please note:

  • Beds are provided to assist with bed mobility and transfers, and to enable medical and nursing care within the client’s home. Beds are not provided for the primary management of chronic musculoskeletal pain.
  • Only single/king single adjustable electric beds will be provided unless there are exceptional clinical circumstances which require a larger adjustable electric bed.
  • These exceptional clinical circumstance must be assessed by a suitably qualified health provider and undergo a prior approval process through DVA (also see Companion Beds in Ancillary equipment below).

Eligibility

The DVA client must have an assessed clinical need and a:

  • Gold Card; or
  • White Card with an accepted condition relating to the clinical need for the equipment.

If the client is a resident of a Residential Aged Care Facility (RACF), the provision of a suitable bed is the responsibility of the RACF.  This includes an adjustable electric bed where clinically recommended.

Prescribing

Suitably Qualified Health Provider

Adjustable electric beds must be prescribed by a suitable assessing health provider.  For this type of item, these include:

  • Occupational Therapist (OT);
  • Registered Nurse (RN); or
  • Physiotherapist.

Prior approval

Standard adjustable electrical beds are provided through a DVA contracted supplier, and as such prior approval is not required for Gold Card Holders unless one or more of the following circumstances exists.

Prior approval and supporting information is required in the following circumstances:

  • When being prescribed for White Card holders
  • When the supply limit exceeds one bed
  • For the provision of companion beds
  • For the provision of larger adjustable beds (exceeding a king single bed) which are requested due to exceptional clinical circumstances, e.g. Bariatric bed.

Deciding on the most appropriate item

An assessment needs to be conducted by a suitably qualified assessing health provider to determine the clinical need for an adjustable electric bed.

The assessing health provider should recommend and prescribe the most suitable bed on-contract to meet the DVA client’s clinical need, in consultation with the DVA client or their representative.  If, due to exceptional clinical circumstances, a larger adjustable bed is required, this should also be discussed with the DVA client or their representative.

Request for item

  1. The suitably qualified health provider should complete the order form: D0992 – Mobility and functional support order form.
    1. If the client is a Gold Card holder and the request is for a contracted adjustable bed – send the completed form directly to the DVA contracted supplier. Details are provided on the order form.
    2. If the client is a White Card holder and the request is for a contracted adjustable bed - ring DVA on 1800 550 457 or email at rapgeneralenquiries [at] dva.gov.au to check eligibility under the clients's accepted disability(ies). If the client is eligible, send the completed form directly to the DVA contracted supplier. Details are provided on the order form. The supplier will seek prior approval if required from DVA. 
    3. For companion beds, larger adjustable beds or requests exceeding one per client, send the completed form with supporting documentation to the DVA contracted supplier. Details are provided on the order form. The supplier will then seek prior approval from DVA. 

Supporting documentation for prior approval request

The supporting documentation that should be forwarded with the prior approval request for a companion bed or larger adjustable bed, due to exceptional clinical circumstances, should include:

  • Condition for which the bed is being prescribed.
  • If other assistive devices to improve bed mobility have been trialled prior to this request.
  • If the DVA client requires assistance with bed mobility and transfers.
  • Where and how the bed will be used.
  • The exceptional clinical circumstance or reason for the need for a companion bed.
  • If the provision of a larger adjustable bed will allow the DVA client to be cared for in their home.
  • Whether a trial of the bed has been undertaken.
  • Any additional ancillary equipment that may be required with the bed (see Ancillary equipment below).
  • Access concerns (e.g. doorways, hallways, positioning in the room), especially if community care services are coming into the home.
  • If the DVA client requires advice and training on the use of the bed.

Additional information

Ancillary equipment

The suitably qualified assessing health provider must also prescribe any ancillary equipment that is required in conjunction with the adjustable electric bed.  These items can be ordered on the same order form as the adjustable electric bed.  

Ancillary equipment for adjustable beds includes, but are not limited to, items such as:

  • pressure care mattress
  • bed stick
  • bedside rail
  • Monkey bar/ Self-lifting stand
  • Companion bed

A companion bed should only be prescribed in conjunction with a clinically required adjustable bed, as it will be prescribed for attachment to the adjustable bed.  An environmental assessment of available space should take into account current or future aids such as walking frames, wheelchairs and hoists as well as access for current or future attending health providers/carers.

Risk assessments should be undertaken prior to the prescription of bed sticks and bed rails.

Australian Standards and legislative requirements

The adjustable electric beds provided must conform to Australian Standard AS/NZS ISO 9999:2011

There is currently no Australian Standard for companion beds.

Health Provider Hotline

1800 550 457
Health Providers can contact DVA for any enquiries by calling the Provider Hotline: (Please press Option 1 when prompted for RAP, or Option 3 for prior health approvals).