Five Features of a First-Rate Hospital Meal Cart

A hospital meal cart serves an important purpose in the daily operation of a hospital. These carts travel from floor to floor with hot meals especially prepared to meet the dietary needs of patients. Some carts are made to store a couple dozen meal trays while others are made to support fewer. The size of the meal cart usually depends on the size of the facility. Regardless of how many trays a meal cart can transport, it must have certain features to make it an effective piece of hospital equipment. Here are just five of those features.

An Appropriate Amount of Space

Most hospital meal carts are filled by sliding a cafeteria tray into each slot. Once the slots are filled, the doors of the cart are closed to keep the meals warm. Before buying a cart, the administrators of the hospital must figure out how many trays they need the cart to transport. Having adequate space in the meal cart can prevent hospital employees from making multiple trips to the same floor.

No-Slip Handles

The handles on a first-rate hospital meal cart must have no-slip handles. It’s likely the cart is going to be weighty with all of the meals inside it. So, an employee must be able to keep careful control of it as it travels throughout the corridors of a hospital. The no-slip grip on a cartcontributes to its safe journey wherever it needs to go in the healthcare facility.


Brakes on a hospital meal cart are a must-have. Brakes should be engaged on the cart when it is in an elevator while other patients and visitors are walking in and out. Also, brakes should be engaged when the cart is parked in a corridor as the meals are distributed. Brakes are necessary when a cart needs to be completely still while being loaded, unloaded or cleaned.

Durable Wheels

Durable wheels are necessary on a hospital meal cart that travels a lot of hallways throughout the day. Pneumatic casters on a meal cart are an ideal choice because they are easy to turn and can move over rough surfaces with ease. For instance, these types of wheels and casters are suitable for moving over the tracks at the entrance to an elevator. In addition to being durable, pneumatic wheels can travel quietly over most types of floors in a hospital. So, patients are less likely to be disturbed by squeaking or other sounds sometimes made by other types of wheels.

Easy to Maintain

A hospital meal cart must be easy to maintain in order to qualify as first-rate. This means all parts of it can be cleaned and sanitized on a daily basis. All equipment in a hospital, including the meal carts, must be maintained so they don’t add germs or bacteria to the environment.

Finally, a hospital meal cart that is sturdy and able to move in a smooth way is an asset to any hospital. Employees of all sizes and levels of strength must be able to operate the cart in a safe way in order to serve patients in the most efficient way.