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Using Patient Hoists Safely in Care
This entry was posted on December 20, 2017.
In a care home, handling patients who find it difficult to move independently can be an everyday occurrence. It’s crucial that these procedures are done in the safest and easiest way to prevent strain on the patient’s body and cause further harm.
For those patients where handling is a necessity to help them move, hoists are often introduced to help both the carer and the patient with safe manoeuvre. The type of hoist equipment required varies from patient to patient, but in all circumstances, it’s important that safe working procedures are followed during hoisting to avoid any accidents that could lead to further injury.
Our range of patient hoists are suitable for all care homes and nursing homes. To provide a clearer understanding of our range of hoists, this blog post explores the different types of hoists and how they should be used to make the process easier for both patient and carer.
Types of Hoists
Stand Aid Hoists:
Stand aid hoists help the patient rise up without putting unnecessary strain on their bodies. The stand aid hoist has been developed so that the carer can raise their patient from the sitting position and carry out procedures such as undressing for toilet use. These hoists with stand assist lifter, support the transfer of individuals who can only bear a minimal weight and prove to be an effective aid in care homes and nursing homes.
Mobile hoists do not require any installation and can offer more flexibility for the user. The hoists do not need to be bolted to a solid surface and therefore, can be transferred easily from room to room. However, mobile hoists tend to require more assistance from the carer as they cannot hold a patient’s weight for long distances. Although mobile hoists are more adaptable, the environment in which they will be used does require consideration as mobile hoists are not generally recommended for slippery or uneven surfaces.
Transfer hoists are specifically used for short transfer between wheelchairs and beds/chairs etc. These devices are less complex and weight bearing than the other types of hoisting and require more carer interaction for relieving pressure. They are easier to assemble and disassemble and therefore are very easy to transport along with the patient for assistance wherever they may need it.
Bath hoists help patients getting in and out of the bath and move around the bathroom easily. They can be either manual or electric hoists, secured to the flooring to help getting in and out of the bath easier for both the patient and the carer. These are a highly effective aid for transferring in what could be a complicated, dangerous job for the carer on such slippery and unpredictable surfaces.
How to Use Hoists
To use patient hoists, a carer must be fully aware of the procedures and operation of the hoist to ensure safe transferring. The following are the simple steps you will need to consider before use:
You should know which hoist should be used: Ensure that the correct hoist is used for the patient based on their needs. If the wrong hoist is used, it can result in inadequate care and support and result in accidents and injury.
Check the surroundings and environment whilst in use: It is the carers responsibility to check the environment which the hoist is being used in. The flooring should be easy for the hoist to grip to, avoiding slippery uneven surfaces. Additionally, there should be adequate room for manoeuvre, whether that be from a bed, chair or bath. The process needs to be as safe as possible to ensure ease of use and patient transfer.
Ensure the patient is comfortable at all times: Most importantly, the patient needs to feel comfortable in the hoisting. The sole purpose of using hoists is to help the patient feel relaxed and that less strain is physically put on them. The sling of the hoist needs to be considered. Some slings come with different length hoops in order to increase comfort and range of positions. Choosing the correct sling ensues a comfortable transfer for the patient.
Use the hoist correctly: The carer must be fully instructed on how to use the hoist correctly as failing to use the harness, belt or sling correctly can cause injury for both patient and carer. The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) require employers to make sure that lifting equipment is inspected and examined thoroughly at 6-month intervals. If you come across an issue with the hoisting, visit the MHRA, the regulator of medical devices, to report the issue.
Don’t leave the patient unattended: Be sure to not leave the vulnerable patient in the hoisting unattended at any time as again this could lead to further injuries.
Introducing hoists for patients is an effective pressure relief aid for people who need extra help with mobility. We understand how important it is to take the pressure off the patient, and the carer alike. We stock a large range of patient handling equipment for all care home and nursing needs. Browse our extensive range or call us to speak to one of our experts for further assistance.