US 2941215 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 21, 1960 A. E. F. JOHNSON 2,941,215
FOLDING FOOT swoor. FOR BEDS Filed June 29, 1956 IN V EN TOR.
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United States Patent 2,941,215 FOLDING FOOT STOOL FOR BEDS Axel E. F. Johnson, Cincinnati, Ohio, assignor to American Hospital Supply Corporation, Evanston, 11]., a corporation of Illinois Filed June 29, 1956, Ser. No. 594,785
1 Claim. (Cl. 92)
This invention relates to a folding foot stool which is particularly suitable for use in combination with hospital beds and the like.
While the beds commonly used in hospitals and clinics vary somewhat in details of construction and design, they all differ generally from domestic beds in the fact that the mattresses of hospital beds are usually supported at a substantially greater distance from the floor. Although the greater height simplifies and facilitates treatment of the patients, it also makes it difiicult for the patients to climb into and out of the beds. This is particularly true where wheels or casters are mounted on the bed legs in order to permit the shifting or repositioning of the beds by hospital attendants.
While safety foot stools for hospital beds are known in the art, such stools are relatively complex structures and often lack the necessary features of safety and convenience. For one thing, present stools are often insecure and tend to wobble or tip if the bed is accidentally moved While a patients weight is upon the stool. Where the stool is movable, a patient in bed may find it difiicult or impossible to reach it and move it into the proper position. Those stools adapted to be secured or mounted upon bed frames are often limited for use only with certain makes or types of beds, and cannot be connected to other beds having difierent side rail elevations.
Therefore, one of the main objects of this invention is to provide a foldable or retractible foot stool for hospital beds and the like which is sturdy and relatively simple in construction, and which may be adjusted for mounting upon the side rails of beds having different rail elevations. Another object is to provide a bed stool having a step which may be easily moved from a retracted position suspended beneath the bed to a lowered position upon the floor by a person lying upon the bed. A further object is ,toprovide a sturdy bed stool having a step pivotally mounted for movement between raised and lowered positions, the stool cooperating with the bed frame to prevent movement of the bed when the weight of a person is'upon the platform-provided by the stool. A still further object is to provide a bed stool having a retract-ible step which lies within the limits of the'bed frame when the step is in retracted conditiona In this connection, it is also a specific object to provide stop means for limiting inward movement of the step when it is in retracted position, the step being maintained against the stop by reason of its own weight so that it may be easily shifted into a lowered position with a minimum of efiort on the part of a patient or attendant.
Other objects will appear from the specification and drawings, in which- Figure l is a broken perspective view of a bed equipped with a folding foot stool embodying the present invention; Figure 2 is a vertical cross sectional view illustrating the foot stool with the step in lowered or extended position; Figure 3 is a vertical cross sectional view similar to Figure 2, but showing the step in raised or retracted ice position; and Figure 4 is an exploded perspective view showing structural details of the present invention.
Referring to the drawings, Figure 1 shows a bed gen erally designated by the letter A, and having a headboard 10, footboard 11 and side rails 12 extending therebetween and at a spaced distance from the floor. Preferably, the legs of the bed are equipped with wheels or casters 13. It is to be noted that the bed illustrated in the drawings has its horizontal side rails 12 elevated a substantial distance above the floor, like the beds generally found in hospitals, clinics and the like. Since the construction of such beds is well known in the art, a more detailed description is believed unnecessary herein.
7 A folding foot stool B embodying the present invention is shown mounted upon side rail 12 of bed A. The stool essentially comprises a pair of support brackets or members 14 dependingly mounted upon side rail 12, a U-shaped frame or strap 15 adjustably carried by the brackets, and a retractible step 16 pivotally mounted upon the frame. As shown best in Figure 4, each of the brackets 14 is vertically elongated and has a laterally turned top portion 17 to which is welded or otherwise secured an inwardly extending tab or ear 18. At a spaced distance below the top of the strap is another car 19 projecting laterally therefrom. These ears are provided with openings corresponding with the openings in rightangled connecting straps 20. Bolts 21 extend through the aligned openings of straps 20 and brackets 14 to clamp the side rail of the bed therebetween, and to securely mount the footstool structure upon the bed.
LI -shaped strap or frame 15 is provided with a base portion '22 and a pair of upstanding legs 23 which project upwardly between the depending support brackets 14 (Figure 4). Like the brackets and the connecting straps, frame 15 may be formed from steel or other sturdy ma terial. Along each of the elongated upstanding legs 23 is a series of uniformly spaced openings 24. Pairs of openings in each series are adapted to communicate with spacedopenings 25 in the depending side brackets, and to receive bolts 26 for mounting the frame upon the brackets. V
It is believed apparent from the viewpresented in Figure 4 that bolts 26 may extend through different pairs of openings in the legs of the frame, thereby permitting vertical adjustment of the frame. Thus, the size of the opening defined by the frame, the support brackets and the bed rail may be varied according to the height of the rail. It is through this opening that step 16 passes as it is moved between the lowered position shown in Figure 2, and the raised or retracted position shown in'Figure 3. 7
As shown most clearly in Figures 1 and 2, step 16 includes a normally horizontal platform 27 and a U-shaped platform support 28 depending therefrom. 4 Preferably, the platform support is provided with resilient bumpers 29 to cushion step 16 in its engagement with the floor. To reinforce the step structure, a bridge 30 (Figure 1) is weldably secured to platform 27 and the legs of support 28, and extends downwardly towards the lower portions of the legs from the central front portion of the platform.
Extending downwardly from opposite sides of the platform at a spaced distance from the rear or inner edge thereof, are a pair of arms 31 (Figures 2 and 3). The end of each arm is pivotally secured to the lower portion of frame legs 23 at a spaced distance from base portion 22 by rivets or by any other suitable means. As shown most clearly in Figure 2, the point of connection between each of the arms and the U-shaped frame or strap is located substantially midway between platform 27 and the base portion 22 of the strap when the strap is in lowered or extended position. Furthermore, it is to be noted that a rear or inner portion of the platform, represented by numeral 32 in the drawings, projects rear- 3 wardly beyond arms 31, and that the pivotally connected arms 31 are adapted to engage the horizontal base portion of strap when the step is in the retracted position -representedin Figure 3. Therefore, the base portion of the strap-acts as a stop to limitthe movement of the step in retracted-position.
When step 16 is in the lowered position illustrated in Figures 1 and -2, the front portion of the step rests upon the floor, While the rear portion of that step is suspended or supported from the horizontal bed rail. Hence, when a persons weight is placed upon platform 27, the resilient cushions carried by the platform support are pushed tightly against the floor, thereby preventing movement of-the step upon the door. Since thestep-is also connected bymeansof frame 15 and brackets 14 to the bed, movement-of the bed away from the stool is impossible. Consequently, the present invention 'eifectively prevents movement of thebed while the patientsweight is upon step 16.
To-adapt the foot stool structure for beds having hori- 'zontal side rails of different elevations, the U-s'haped frame or strap 15 may be moved vertically with reference to the depending support brackets until the platform 27 lies along a'substantially horizontal plane when the step is in lowered position. The frame and brackets are then tightly secured together by means of bolts 26. If the "side rail of a particular type of bed is relatively close to the floor, itis believed apparent that the distance between "the base of strap 15 and the side rail must be reduced. Since the step passes between the bed rail and the base of the strap as-it is moved between retracted and extended position, some means must be provided for limiting the radius of the steps arc of travel. This is accomplished by means of depending arms 31.
When the step is in the lowered position represented in-Figure 2, itwill be seen that the pivotal axis of the step is a spaced distance below the plane of platform 27. As aresult, the arcs defined by the front corner of the platform 27 and the free end 'of the platform support 28,
the step is pivoted between lowered and raised positions, are substantially lower than would otherwise be obtained if the pivotal axis extended through the rear portion 32 of the platform. Therefore, by reason of arms 31, it ispossible to provide'a step which is disposed at a suitable elevation while in lowered position, and which willclear the side rail as it is moved into retracted position even though the side rail of the'bed is relatively close to the floor.
As the 'step is lifted totheposition shown in Figure 3, the overhanging rear portion of the platform is brought closer'to thehor'izontal base or stop'portionof-strap 15. Finally, when substantially the entire step structure lies within the limits of rail 12, stop 22 is engaged by arms 31 adjacent'the rearfportion of the piatform (Figure 3). Since the weight of the retracted step rests substantially behind the pivotal axis, the step'will-remain in the-illustra'tedv position until support 28 is pulled outwardly from beneath the'bed. It is to benot'edthat since the horizontal portion of the U-shaped support '28 lies directly beneath th'ebed rail when the step is in retracted; position,
.4 a patient reclining upon the bed may easily reach the support and urge the step into its'lowered position.
While in the foregoing specification I have disclosed an embodiment of my invention in considerable detail for purposes of making an adequate disclosure thereof, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that numerous changes may be made in those "details without departing from the spirit and scope of my invention.
A folding foot'stool 'for a bed having a side rail, comprising a pair of spaced'verticalsupport members-adapted to be dependingly mounted upon the side railof the bed with their lower endsterminating in spaced relation above a floor surface, a U-shaped frame having a pair of upstanding legs carr-ie'dby said depending support members and having a horizontal base formed integrally with said legs and suspended in spaced relation above the floor surface, said dependingsupport members extending alongside .the upstanding legs of said Uashaped frame, a retractable step having a pair of depending rear armspivotally-connected to the lower .portions of said upstanding legs for pivotal movement of said step between raised and lowered positions, .said depending arms being engageable with said horizontalbase of said U-shaped frame when the step is in raised .position for maintaining said step in said raised position, said step providing at least adjustably connecting said'depending support members and saidupsta-nding legs to support said frame atdifferent selected elevations and thereby support said step in horizontal eonditionwhen in lowered position regardless of theelevation'of said side rail.
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