It’s always exciting when a startup company joins Focus. Before our work as an answering service has even started, they have developed an order-entry system, refined their informational materials, and ramped up their marketing efforts. When they come to us, they’re ready to grow, and our Focus team helps them achieve that goal!
We are in awe of Fall Guys Products, and we’re proud to assist this innovative and compassionate company to stretch their precious startup resources, as they actively improve the lives of their elderly customers.
– Donna West
Fall Guys Products specializes in unique mobility devices that are steadily supplying seniors with newfound independence.
The company’s origins stretch back 20 years.
Physical therapist Steve Kerr was becoming frustrated. One of his patients, Lloyd, had lost all feeling in his feet because of diabetes. His balance was severely impacted. His wheelchair would slip out from under him when he stood up, causing instability and hindering his ability to walk on his own. He had fallen on multiple occasions.
Once positioned on the clinic’s parallel bars, however, Lloyd moved about unencumbered.
This planted a seed in Kerr’s mind.
A FOOT IN THE DOOR
For more than 20 years, Kerr had worked in geriatric rehabilitation nursing facilities and had witnessed the devastating results of falls. “When falls result in a broken hip, more than half of sufferers 65 years or older die within a year”, he says.
“They stop moving because they’re afraid they’ll fall again.”
It could have happened to Regina.
Another patient of Kerr’s, Regina had endured more than 20 falls. “And I’m not exaggerating when I say she had broken almost every bone in her body,” Kerr says.
When she did move from place to place, it was completely hunched over a walker.
“I think … she felt the closer she was to the ground, the less of an impact the fall would be,” Kerr says. “I asked myself, ‘What in the world can I do?’”
In healthcare facilities, residents with fall concerns are typically wheelchair-bound. Alarms are often placed on their body or bed to alert staff that the individual is attempting to stand. Beds are positioned as low to the floor as possible, and the area is surrounded with mats.
Kerr envisioned an interconnected home railing system that would provide physical support to seniors, while simultaneously eliminating the fear of falling.
His son, Brian, provided much-needed inspiration and encouragement to get the project moving.
“He said, ‘Dad, we should do this,’” Kerr recalls. “‘This is something that’s really needed.’”
In 2015, father and son began looking for manufacturing companies to assist in the endeavor. They found a Canadian company that specialized in transfer poles. Kerr thought, “Why can’t they make horizontal poles and connect them?” After a bit of convincing, the Canadian manufacturer agreed.
“So, there I was, sitting in my office with a bunch of poles on the floor. I said to God, ‘What do I do with this now?’ I swear I heard a voice say: ‘Put it at their bedside, dummy!’”
Kerr immediately began working on the prototype. It wasn’t long until Fall Guys Products’ first system was ready for its testing phase.
Regina immediately sprang to mind.
After a day of having the rail system installed in her room, however, Reginia called Kerr and asked him to remove it.
But Kerr was persistent. Would she give the system just 24 more hours?
Regina relented. By the following day – she was sold.
Sonta, too, was reluctant to have the railing system installed. Convincing her took some work, but within a few weeks of the installation, Kerr received one of the best – and most forthright – testimonials to date.
Kerr had asked to borrow her rails so that a fellow patient could try them out.
“She agreed, but with one condition,” he recalls. A time constraint. “She said, ‘I get up 4-5 times a night. If I don’t get them back by eight, I won’t have help getting up to go to the bathroom!”
Fall Guys Products offers a cost-effective alternative to assisted living facilities, which can cost families up to $3,500 a month. Most importantly, they allow senior citizens to live independently, with their dignity intact.
The challenge, however, is educating caregivers, doctors, and families about the product and its benefits. Not yet covered by Medicare, some private insurances are covering their products and Fall Guys also offers a payment plan. Kerr regularly offers presentations at skilled care facilities and meets with interested parties in their homes to create a better understanding of their products.
Fall Guys Products continues to surge ahead, selling rail systems and providing stellar customer service with assistance from Focus’ dedicated representatives.
“If there’s a communication breakdown, we’re in trouble,” Kerr says of the collaboration.
For the individuals benefiting from Fall Guys Products, however, troubles are fewer than they were before. Like the entrepreneurs who made independence possible, they continue to rise to the occasion.
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