What you should know before you buy a hospital bed for the old person

My grandfather went through back surgery and we had to make sure that he does not experience much pain. It was a tough job deciding on the right bed for him and we spent a lot of time making research to get the right bed that will make him feel comfortable as a senior. In this post I will give 12 tips to consider when buying a hospital bed for the seniors:

Hospital beds are also known as zero gravity, electric beds, or the adjustable because they come with multi hinges that enable them to be reclined at different angles according to the patient preference. Previously they were only found in hospitals but things have changed and now they can be found in many homes.

You can control the surface of the bed using a manual or an electric crank depending on the type of the bed, and this enables you to lower the body, or just the upper body or both hence creating a zero-gravity-effect. Three types of hospital beds are available on the market which is manual bed, semi-electric and full electric beds.

Why do seniors need a hospital bed?

  • Hospital beds are no longer those awkward looking beds that were sterile and uncomfortable. If you still own a bed that does not give you comfortability and you are having trouble getting in and out, then it is time that you get an electrical bed.
  • Electrical beds are adjusted mechanically or by electric means which makes them a convenient choice for seniors. This allows the person to recline, lower, elevate as well as raise his or her bed from different angles according to his or her preference for better health and comfort.
  • In case you are facing difficulty moving in and out of your bed, the hospital bed can be raised or lowered making it easier for you to get in or out without any issues. It will make it easier to get into your wheelchairs as well as walkers without having to experience too much pain. In case you are facing difficulties when sleeping on a flat mattress then you need an electric bed.
  • Hospital beds make your work easier as a caregiver because they allow you to control and adjust the position of the bed. This prevents you from working in an unhealthy back position that can make you feel back pains.
  • Electric beds do not need a large space as they are small and mobile making the task of taking care of your loved ones easy as compared to large hospital beds. Besides they have wheels that enable the bed to be moved around if necessary.
  • Since the beds are adjustable, you can add more accessories such as table surfaces, rails and many more making the task of caring for the loved ones easier.

Benefits of the hospital bed

·         Pain relief

Adjustable beds are good for patients suffering from cramps, neck pain issues, as well as shoulder problems. This is because these beds can be adjusted to any position that will make the patient more comfortable. You can adjust the bed to find the best position to alleviate spinal pain osteoarthritis or any other degenerative pain disorders. Also, elevation helps to prevent pain caused by pressure and swelling in the legs.

·         They are more comfortable as compared to normal beds

Since these beds can be adjusted to different angles and positions, enabling you to recline, raise the upper or lower part of the bed or do both to increase comfortability depending on your preference. This can be achieved with no need of getting in and out of the bed as almost all electric beds come with a remote control or button which when pressed crank the motor.

·         Convenience

While on an electric bed, you will be able to adjust your bed to different angles as well as positions that make you feel comfortable. This will enable you to have your meals in bed, use your laptop, breastfeed your child, read your novels, watch TV, as well as get in and out of the bed very easily unlike when using a normal bed.

·         It promotes intimacy

This is because it makes conversations easy with your partners as the bed can be reclined. Besides you can adjust the bed to different positions without having to depend on pillows and such. Your bedroom life will still be interesting and this can lead to strengthening your relationship with your partner.

·         Independence

Many electric beds can be controlled independently on each half of the bed. The bed can be technically split making it possible to lower or raise one half without disturbing the other person that you are sharing the bed with. This means that you may sleep at 15 degrees while your partner may sleep at 20 degrees. In addition to that, you may decide which recline angle you like without having to worry about the person beside you.

·         Low Maintenance

These beds do not need to be greased, change air or water pump. Besides you can easily disassemble and assemble your bed. With the remote control, you will be able to choose any configuration that suits your preference making you more comfortable, unlike normal beds.

·         Accessories

Modern electric beds can handle different accessories such as USB ports for smartphones and tablets. These offer you a chance of working from your bed as well as giving you a chance of watching a movie from your gadget while in bed. Also, they are good for those who need their phones to remain beside them so that they would not miss any important messages or notifications.

·         Eliminate Snoring

Under normal circumstances, people snore due to the closure of the windpipe due to the weight pressure from the neck when you are asleep. When it comes to an electric bed, there is much transfer of the weight pressure off the windpipe and this enables you to breathe easily hence you will not disturb your partner.

Does your Insurance cover the cost of a hospital bed?

Nowadays most of the insurance companies will pay for the electric bed cost as long as it falls within certain criteria. And this criterion is that you have to make sure that the medical equipment is that it has to be durable and it has to be a piece of essential equipment that is necessary for treating or alleviating a health condition.

Patients with problems such as cramps, neck and shoulder pains, arthritis or just any other pain problem that falls within this criterion are eligible for insurance coverage. But keep in mind that different insurance companies have different policies and therefore you will have to inquire with your insurance company to be sure if they will cover the cost of an electric bed.


Your semi-electric bed costs will be covered by Medicare as long as you get a prescription from your doctor though it will not pay for any commercially available bed. Besides, the bed must meet the device criteria and it must have two motors that are responsible for adjusting the foot and head positions together with a crank that will be responsible for raising the frame height. Medicare will cover up to 80% of the cost of the electric bed. But Medicare policies differ from one state to another, therefore you will have to check in their office to be sure of what is covered by your Medicare state’s program.

Does the Insurance cover for used hospital beds?

Most insurance companies will not pay for the cost of buying used electrical beds. But still, you can check with your insurance companies as different companies have different policies and your insurance company might be one of those that accept used hospital beds.

Is it a good idea of buying a used hospital bed?

Due to the benefits that come with electric beds, it is worth getting a used electrical bed if you cannot manage to have a new one. But you will have to consider many factors before you pay for one and these include:

        I.            Quality

Most of the used adjustable beds are found to be in bad conditions because prolonged use for many years causes damages. This might lead to breakdowns as well as faults, especially in fully electric beds. So you will have to take your time to find one which is still in good condition. Besides buying a new hospital bed gives you a guarantee that it is in its best condition and you will have a warranty.

      II.            Limited options

Getting a used hospital bed is not easy because the beds are being used for quite a long time and this makes it hard to find beds that are just floating around. This makes it hard to have many options since the number of used beds is limited.

    III.            High costs for repair and maintenance

It is common to find used beds in a bad condition and that means you will spend more on repairing and maintenance.

   IV.            Hygiene

It is not advisable to use hospital beds due to hygiene issues. This is because you have no idea who was using it in the first place. Besides, you do not have any idea what infectious disease they were carrying and this makes it worse.

     V.            Limited options in customization

It is not easy to customize a hospital used bed since most used beds have some parts missing or it may be outdated. New modernized beds allow you to have modern conveniences such as waterproof mattresses, USB hubs as well as folding technologies.

Where can you buy a hospital bed at the best price?

There are many online markets where you can easily get all sorts of used medical gadgets as well as the new ones. Most of the used electrical beds sold online are refurbished and you can easily upgrade them to meet the modern standards with features like USB hubs, waterproof mattresses, and all other new features. Some of the leading sellers include:

Amazon – You can find new and used hospital beds on this online market place

American International Medical – This online market has a huge selection of used medical appliances and equipment.

Hospital Direct Medical Equipment – This is an online market that deals with selling of second-hand medical equipment.

DotMed – This is an online marketplace for buying and selling all sorts of medical appliances.

LabX – Is an online marketplace that deals with products related to medical, science as well as laboratory activities.

Buying Vs Renting a Hospital Bed that has a Used Mattress

It might be cheaper, but it is not recommended buying a hospital bed that has a used mattress. Unlike frames, mattresses are easily exposed to bacteria as well as pathogens when used. Besides they are easily degraded after being used sometimes. Second-hand mattresses will not be good for you since they will lack comfortability and you might expose yourself to other communicable diseases. It will be in your best interest if you get a new mattress that you are sure that is clean and hygiene as it will offer you comfortability and flexibility.

A guide for buying a hospital bed: 12 things that you should put into consideration:

1.      Lifting Capacity

You must put into consideration the amount of weight you will be lifting with your bed. The Kings and queens bed tends to have higher lifting capabilities as compared to the Full and small size Twin beds.

2.      Remote Control

As the bed is meant to be used by an elderly person it must be easy to control and adjust. It is better that you choose a bed that has a remote control so that it can be easily adjusted to meet the person’s needs.

3.      The Wallhugger Engineering

This is a very important piece of technology as when you press a button to raise the upper body of the frame it will also move to the opposite direction moving the frame to the bedside table rather than far from it.

4.      Adjustable Mattress

In case you have a hospital bed that did not come with a mattress and you need to order one, you must make sure that you order the mattress that can be adjusted and it must be the exact size that fits your bed. Avoid mattresses with springs that are not flexible and cannot be adjusted.

5.      Warranty

When you are looking for a place to buy your hospital bed make sure that you find a seller that provides manufacturer warranties. These beds might be mechanical and that means they might last for a long time. The warranty will help you save a lot when it comes to repair and maintenance.

6.      Dual Adjustable, Controlled, adjustable bed

If you intend the bed to be used by two elders, then you should make sure that the bed can be configured for both without making one of them uncomfortable. This means that the body should have the ability to be independently adjusted accordingly on each half.

7.      Adjustable beds for seniors/elders

You must make sure that you buy a bed that is easy to use and that means a remote-controlled bed will be the best option. This is because the patient will be able to adjust the bed him or herself according to her preference.

8.      Sizes and Dimensions

In most cases, hospital beds are larger as compared to normal beds due to the accessories that they come with. You will have to figure out the size and dimensions of your hospital bed to get the appropriate bedding and sheets.

9.      Adjustable massage beds

Modern hospital beds have a variety of features such as massages and heat which are necessary in case the elder using the bed has blood circulation problems or severe back pain.

10.  Multiple angles and reclining feature

Make sure that the bed has multi-angle or reclining capabilities or both of them. These features help the elder to watch TV, use a laptop, have breakfast and meals and do many other kinds of stuff in bed. This is because it will let him or her adjust the position of his or her leg as well as his or her upper body.

11.  Adjustable Bed Frames

In case the elderly has mobility difficulties, then a manually adjustable bed is good for him/her. These are cheaper as compared to electric beds and do not require a lot of maintenance.

12.  Extra feature

Make sure that you do your research and find a bed that has a lot of features that are convenient for the elderly. Depending on the nature of the person, there are a lot of features that are offered on modern hospital beds such as massage, heating, inbuilt speakers, cooling, and Bluetooth.

Full electric Vs semi-electric bed

Full electric hospital beds

This is one of the modern hospital beds with advanced technologies. It is controlled by a remote and must be connected to an electric outlet. The motor works to adjust the angle of the lower and upper body sections of the bed as well as the height. This makes the work of the caregiver easier. But with all these technologies do not expect it to come at a lower cost. But it has value for your money and it is the best option if you can afford it.

Semi-Electric Hospital beds

This kind of bed comes with a motor whereby a push of a button you can adjust the feet and head as well as change positions. But still, you will have to adjust the height controls manually. This bed is good in case the elderly do not need to change the heights often. They are more expensive than manual beds because they include a motor but still they are good because they make the task easier for the caregiver.

Can you rent a hospital bed?

It is not advisable to rent a hospital bed to be used at home due to the following reasons:

1.      Poor quality

Normally rental beds are beds that have been used for quite some time and tend to be old in their bad conditions. This means that they can break down anytime and they will need repairs more than new beds.

2.      Limited availability

The number of people searching for hospital beds rental is higher hence the options are limited. This might lead you to end up with one that has features that do not suit you.

3.      The high cost of renting a hospital bed

The cost of renting a hospital bed can be so high where normally it ranges from $300 to $400 per month. You are likely to use the bed for months or even a year and that means the costs can exceed the price of buying a new one. On Amazon, the cost for advanced bed starts from $2500 and that means you will save a lot of money by buying your bed.

4.      Rules and Regulations

When you rent a bed you are forced to adhere to the rules and regulations of the owner. This will prevent you from customizing the bed to meet your needs.

5.      Hygiene concerns

Hospital beds have been used by many people and that makes it not good when it comes to hygiene. This can expose you and your elderly to bacteria or transmitted diseases.

Cost of renting an electric bed

Many companies dealing with medical equipment have a price tag that ranges from $300 to $400 per month which means that it is between $3600 to $4800 per year.

Is a hospital bed tax-free?

What you have to understand is that a hospital bed in under a durable medical equipment schedule and that means it is tax-deductible when bought by you or your partner. Keep in mind that you can request for a tax refund if you purchase or rent the equipment in the given taxation period. In case the bed was paid by your insurance company, spouse, relative or any other dependent then you will have no right to claim for a tax refund. Keep in mind you are only in a position to deduct the cost if the cost of the bed exceeds 7.5% of your annually Adjusted Gross Income.

List of the latest models of hospital beds that you can buy

1.      Leggett and Plant New Split S-Cape + 2.0 Foundation Style

This type of electric bed has been in the development process for quite some time and now it offers dual massages, two wireless remotes, under-bed lighting, quiet motor, and wall –hugger engineering whereas each half of the bed can operate on its own. These features make it one of the best electric beds in the market. You can get one at a good price on Amazon.

2.      Nectar Adjustable bed

This bed comes with a nectar adjustable mattress together with its adjustable frame giving the user the best experience. Besides, it has an RV recline, zero gravity, wireless remote, three-zone massage technology, and USB plugs. You will be able to raise and lower your bed at any degree angle so that you set your body to any desired position. You can get one at a good price on Amazon.

3.      dynasty Mattress S-Cape

This is among the leading technologically advanced electric bed that you can find in the market.  It has a backlit wireless remote that will help you raise and lower the independent split queen and king beds. It has a capacity of lifting to 700 pounds which is among the highest capacity when it comes to hospital beds. You can get one at a good price on Amazon.

4.      Reverie 5D Adjustable Foundation

This is one of its kind when it comes to electric beds. It comes with two wireless remotes, with customized massages options as well as Bluetooth motors and other accessories that will let you change your recline as well as angles to meet your preference. You can get one at a good price on Amazon

5.      Serta Motion essentials 3

This is a luxurious lightweight hospital electric bed that is more comfortable. It has a smooth advanced lifting system that will let you control the bed using a wired remote control. With this remote, you can set the bed in different angles and positions according to your preference. You can get one at a good price on Amazon.

6.      Tempur-Perdic TEMPUR-Ergo Premier

This has a high-quality design that makes it smooth to lift and lower your body easily. Besides you can set it in different positions and angles making it more comfortable. It comes with a wireless LCD monitor remote control that helps you control message options as well as memory positions. All these can be controlled from an app that runs on your android smartphone or tablet. You can get this at a good price on Amazon.

7.      Tomorrow Sleep Adjustable Base

This is an innovative bed with an innovative design with very advanced technology that will provide comfort. It will give you a stress free sleep with no pain. It offers zero gravity in order to protect your back and neck and this can be achieved by adjusting it to multiple angles and recline positions. You can get one at a good price on Amazon.


When you think about a comfortable bed, think of a bed that promotes health as well as wellbeing for you and the seniors. Electric beds started as only hospital equipment but now are common in our homes since they help many people.

Many hospitals sell and rent hospital beds therefore you can make your research and take your time to find a good hospital bed for your senior. It is very important when you are making the selection to be sure that what you choose will be the best for your senior.

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