Patent application title: Aesthetic Toilet Chair Commode Covering
Anita Cotton (Augusta, MI, US)
IPC8 Class: AA47C3111FI
Class name: Chairs and seats detachable supplemental flexible pad or cover
Publication date: 2012-06-14
Patent application number: 20120146371
A decorative and aesthetic covering for a toilet chair commode that
reduces its visual signature and provides concealment of its presence.
The covering comprises an upper portion that fits over and covers the
hand rails of a standard toilet chair commode, along with a hinged flap
that covers the toilet bowl region. The upper portion and the flap are
both padded to provide comfort for a seated user, while also mimicking
the look of a standard seat chair. The flap is positioned secured in a
closed state via a strip of hook and loop fasteners along a first side,
and is hingeably attached along a second side to provide access to the
concealed toilet bowl below. A skirt attaches to the base of the upper
portion to provide concealment for the base of the commode. The covering
may be adorned in any color or pattern deemed suitable by the user.
1. A toilet chair commode covering, comprising: an upper material region
adapted to conform to a standard toilet chair commode hand rail; a flap
region hingedly attached along one edge to said upper material region,
and fastenable to said upper material region at an opposite edge; said
flap region adapted to conceal an underlying toilet bowl of a standard
toilet chair when in a closed position, and provide access to said toilet
bowl when in an open position; a skirted lower region extending from said
upper material region to a floor surface, adapted to conceal a said
standard toilet chair commode legs.
2. A device as in claim 1, wherein said upper material region and said skirted lower region comprise a connected, one-piece construction.
3. A device as in claim 1, wherein said upper material region and said skirted lower region comprise a two-piece construction and are separable.
4. A device as in claim 1, wherein said upper material region comprises imbedded padding.
5. A device as in claim 4, wherein said imbedded padding is removable said material upper region further comprises access for removing said padding
6. A device as in claim 1, wherein said flap fastening means comprises a hook and loop fastening.
CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION
 This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 61/421,021 filed on Dec. 8, 2010, entitled "Potty Chair Covers."
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 1. Field of the Invention
 The present invention relates to commodes and temporary toilet chairs for hospice and long-term care environments. More specifically, the present invention pertains to an aesthetic covering for a toilet chair that conceals its presence and allows it to blend in to the decor of a room.
 2. Description of the Prior Art
 Toilet chair commodes are commonly used healthcare appliances that are utilized primarily in situations involving the terminally ill, the elderly or otherwise bedridden individuals who are not able to walk long distances to a toilet or those who suffer from incontinence. These devices are temporary structures that allow an individual, independently or with the aid of a healthcare provider, to easily access and utilize a closer appliance to relieve themselves. These devices have familiar design elements, including a four-legged frame, arm rests and a toilet container located within the interior of the frame.
 Commonly, these items are used in hospice care wherein a patient is care for at home. The device is generally are kept in close proximity to a patient's bed to allow easy access. Consequently, the commode can be considered unsightly and can create an atmosphere more akin to a hospital room than a warm, comforting bedroom. Many individuals are forced to use such a device, including those who suffer from terminal illnesses, old age or those who lack mobility. Their placement in plain sight can be a source of embarrassment or humiliation when visitors are welcomed into the room. They carry a connotation of poor health and lack of independence, which can be a source of shame for the user. These thoughts are counter to the desired feelings of the patient, who needs to be in good spirits and have a positive outlook to maintain health.
 The present invention provides a means to reduce the visual signature of a toilet chair commode within a residential or hospital setting. The device is simplistic in its construction, allowing ease of replacement and cleaning. The device is suited for covering a toilet chair to conceal its presence and promote a more aesthetically pleasing environment for the user and any invited guests. The cover is quickly adaptable for accessing the covered toilet pan via a hingedly attached flap. The top portion of the cover, along with the flap, is padded regions that improve comfort and mimic a standard furniture chair. A skirt covers the legs of the toilet chair frame.
 Several devices have been disclosed in the prior art for covering commodes and toilets. These devices have similar design features and a common drawback. Most employ a large cover that is complex, and one that is specifically designed for a floor-mounted, standard toilet and attached tank.
 U.S. Pat. No. 5,253,375 to Prosper is one such device, wherein a commode cover is described having an annular channel member for mounting upon an upper end of a commode bowl. The cover is designed to be used in conjunction with a standard toilet bowl and rear mounted tank. The arm chair houses controls for imbedded functionality, such as a speaker and a roller of sanitary paper. While this device is useful for covering standard, floor-mounted toilet, it is overly complex for use with a mobile, healthcare commode chair as described in the present invention. The Prosper device is more suited for use in a bathroom setting, as opposed to an easily removable and cleanable cover for a toilet chair. Toilet chairs tend to become unsanitary rather quickly based on their use. The bowl requires removal and replenishment after each use. For these reasons, a commode cover for a toilet chair needs to exhibit an easily removable, easily cleanable structure that affords a similar level of comfort and anonymity as a standard bedroom chair or cover thereof.
 U.S. Pat. No. 4,368,551 to Cummings a decorative enclosure for conventional toilets that forms a utility cabinet, concealing an underlying toilet bowl and associated tank. The structure includes an enclosure with a hinged seating portion for accessing the toilet bowl prior to use. The structure itself is adjustable to fit various sized toilets and includes external access to the flushing mechanism. While this device provides concealment of a traditional toilet bowl structure, which includes the bowl itself and associated tank, no mention is made of concealment of a toilet chair commode. The Cummings patent provides a rather complex structure that forms a cabinet, which would be otherwise difficult to remove or clean as often as the present invention. The ability to easily remove and replenish the present invention is vital, given its role in concealing a temporary toilet chair that may require frequent and rapid deployment.
 U.S. Pat. No. 3,905,051 to Gozdziewski describes a similar device for connection with the hinge brackets of a conventional toilet seat. Arm rest supports are provided on the lateral sides of the toilet with imbedded hand grips and receptacles for trash, newspapers and magazines. Similar to the aforementioned prior art patents, the Gozdziewski patent describes a cover that forms over a conventional toilet and functions to improve comfort while utilizing the facilities thereof. No mention is made to covering a toilet chair commode for aesthetic reasons and one that is easily adapted to use therefor.
 The present invention provides a decorative cover for concealing a toilet chair commode utilized in hospitals, hospice care and in the dwellings of the terminally ill or otherwise bedridden individuals. Its construction provides a padded upper region that covers the railings of a toilet chair, a padded cushion for placement over the toilet bowl itself, and a skirted lower region for concealing the legs of the chair. Its function is both for aesthetics and for providing the same in a manner that is easily removed, replaced and cleaned after a short period of use. The present invention substantially diverges in design elements from the prior art and consequently it is clear that there is a need in the art for an improvement to existing toilet chair coverings. In this regard the instant invention substantially fulfills these needs.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 In view of the foregoing disadvantages inherent in the known types of toilet commode coverings now present in the prior art, the present invention provides a new covering wherein the same can be utilized for providing convenience for the user when improving the aesthetics of a room by deploying a toilet chair commode and providing one that is easily cleaned and replaced if necessary.
 It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a new and improved commode covering that is designed for use with a toilet chair commode, and one that has all of the advantages of the prior art and none of the disadvantages.
 Another object of the present invention is to provide a means of concealing the presence of a toilet chair commode within a room by placing a padded covering over its structure to transform its features into that of a standard piece of furniture.
 Another object of the present invention is to provide a covering that includes a padded upper region, a seat pad and a skirt lower region. The regions may be decorated or adorned in different styles and patterns to fit the user's preferences.
 Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a toilet chair covering that is basic in its construction to allow easy removal, cleaning and replacement if desired. The toilet chair serves a vital healthcare function; its covering should be easily removable, and cleanable to promote sanitation and ease of use. Complex structures and covers would pose a problem if soiled, as these would probably require more intensive or expensive cleaning techniques. The present invention provides a washable covering with internal padding that is optionally removable.
 Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTIONS OF THE DRAWINGS
 The above invention will be better understood and the objects set forth above as well as other objects not stated above will become more apparent after a study of the following detailed description thereof. Such description makes use of the annexed drawings wherein like numeral references are utilized throughout.
 FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of the toilet chair covering in its working position, wherein it is covering a toilet chair commode and its padded seat region is elevated to reveal the underlying toilet bowl.
 FIG. 2 shows a frontal perspective view of the present invention in its working position.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
 Referring now to FIG. 1, there is shown a perspective view of the present invention in its working position. A toilet chair covering comprising a padded upper region 15, a padded seat region 12 and a skirted lower region 13 is shown covering the frame structure of a standard toilet chair commode. The upper region 15 provides a padded arm rest that covers the arms 14 of the toilet chair around the upper periphery of the chair. The skirted lower region 13 provides concealment of the toilet chair legs 16, and extends from the padded upper region 15 to the floor. The interior of the toilet chair contains a toilet bowl 11 for use by a user. This region is covered when not in use by a hingeable seat flap 12. When in a working position, as shown in FIG. 1, the flap 12 is pulled back to reveal the underlying toilet bowl 11. When not in use, the flap 12 is laid horizontally over the toilet bowl 11 to conceal its presence and provide a padded cushion for a user to sit upon. The flap 12 is secured in a horizontal position by a strip of hook and loop fasteners along its free edge. The strip secures the free edge and prevents the flap from moving while a user is seated thereupon.
 The construction of the covering may comprise a one piece or two piece construction, wherein the skirt region 13 is removably secured to the toilet chair separately from the upper region 15. The pattern, color and degree of padding used for the covering may comprise any typical furniture covering material system or color pattern desirable by one skilled in the art or by the end user. This may include cotton material, linen or any other suitable outer covering material. The interior padding of the covering may be integral to the flap region 13 and the upper region 15, or optionally removable if desirable for improved utility when cleaning a soiled covering.
 Referring now to FIG. 2, there is shown a frontal perspective view of the present invention, wherein the toilet chair covering is in its working position. The flap region 12 is in a closed position, concealing the underlying toilet bowl 11. In this position, the chair resembles a standard furniture chair with a padded upper region 15 for the user to rest his or her arms against, and a padded cushion provided by the flap 12. The legs 16 are concealed using a skirt that extends from the upper region 15 and reaches down to the floor.
 Overall, the covering provides a means to maintain a warming atmosphere in a room wherein a hospital or hospice style toilet chair is maintained for an ill or bed ridden patient. The covering provides the patient with relief from having the toilet chair in constant vision, and elevates anxiety tied to its presence in company of others. These types of chairs are often kept in plain sight, as they can be difficult to otherwise stow or store. This may cause feelings of embarrassment and humiliation for these patients, as toilet chairs may be associated with lack of independence or incontinence. The present invention provides a device for suffering individuals who desire to restore any lost senses of dignity that comes about through the presence of a toilet chair commode. The coverings described and taught by the present invention provide a means of concealing or dressing these articles for that very purpose.
 In use, and individual would drape the covering over the toilet chair when the toilet bowl lid is in a closed position. The skirt may be constructed independently of the upper region, or likewise they may be provided in a one-piece construction if desired. The padded upper region fits over the railings of the toilet chair, while the padded seat cushion flap conceals the toilet bowl. The skirt is unruffled and suspended over the legs of the toilet chair for concealment thereof. In total, the regions of the covering provide complete concealment of the toilet chair, and improve the aesthesis and decor of a room over the presence of an unconcealed toilet chair.
 With respect to the above description then, it is to be realized that the optimum dimensional relationships for the parts of the invention, to include variations in size, materials, shape, form, function and manner of operation, assembly and use, are deemed readily apparent and obvious to one skilled in the art, and all equivalent relationships to those illustrated in the drawings and described in the specification are intended to be encompassed by the present invention.
 Therefore, the foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly, all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention.
Patent applications in class DETACHABLE SUPPLEMENTAL FLEXIBLE PAD OR COVER
Patent applications in all subclasses DETACHABLE SUPPLEMENTAL FLEXIBLE PAD OR COVER