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CareLab offers a simulated environment where new nursing devices can be developed and studied in a realistic hospital-room setting. The lab consists of a typical patient care room, complete with ensuite bathroom.

Using CareLab, teams are developing products to reduce the transmission of hospital-acquired infections. Researchers have developed a hand hygiene prompting system - made up of alcohol gel dispensers, ceiling-mounted tracking beacons and a small wearable wireless receiver - that is designed to monitor and modify hospital workers’ hand hygiene behaviour. Caregivers are prompted if they forget to disinfect their hands before or after entering a patient’s room or before or after performing a procedure on a patient.

Revolutionary products in advanced stages of development and testing include a robotic aid to help nurses lift and move even very heavy patients and a device that inserts lifting straps under even the heaviest patient, with no effort. Other research includes an easy-to-fasten safety pole to help people in and out of their hospital bed. The D-shaped device attaches to and sticks out from the wall and can easily be removed and reinstalled from one side of the bed to the other side or used by patients in other beds.

This lab is located at Toronto Rehab’s University Centre at 550 University Avenue, Toronto.