FMH Utilizes Mechanical Lifts and Positioning Aids
June 16, 2009At Franklin Memorial Hospital, safe patient lifting is a safety priority for caregivers and patients alike. That is why the hospital has initiated a patient and staff injury prevention program using mechanical lifts and positioning aids to move its patients.
This equipment includes: ceiling lifts, lateral transferring devices, patient positioning devices, and portable slings with mechanical lifts.
Staff involved in all areas of direct care have been trained to determine a patient's need for assistance and which patient handling aids or equipment are most appropriate, and to assess the need for additional personnel. This is then discussed with the patient and or family.
"Equipment and devices provide a more secure process for lifting, transferring, or repositioning patients and benefits them as well as the health care provider," said Pam Ernest, Chief Nursing Officer. "Manual lifting and transferring of patients has been the most commonly reported cause of injury among health care workers."
The program includes an extensive staff orientation and training program and on-going monitoring of usage. New staff involved in direct patient care receive hands-on equipment training and practice, and are educated on injury statistics, ergonomic principles, and how to assess a patient's level of mobility.
It is part of a new "minimal lift" approach that puts safety first. An important part of safe care is how staff help patients move or transfer from one place to another. "Patients need not be alarmed when they see new equipment here at the hospital made just for moving and transferring patients," said Ernest.
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