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How to Use a Patient Lift?

Time:2017-10-23   Source:Nice Healthcare

A patient lift is a type of apparatus that helps medical personnel lift and caregivers to  transport patients who are non-ambulatory and may be too heavy to lift manually. Patient lifts are commonly used in home care settings, extended-care centers, hospices, nursing homes and hospitals. They are easy to use and can prevent serious back injuries to the caregivers and staff. They may be operated by means of a power source with a rechargeable battery or manually with a hydraulic system. Manual Patient lifts that are operated by a hand pump are easy to use and are the most popular because of price.

IMPORTANT: Before using a patient lift, please read and adhersafety precautions and warnings. Failure to do so could result in serious injury or damage to you and/or the patient lift.

Before lifting anyone with a patient lift, practice with by using a helper, not the patient. It is important to understand how the lift will feel with a patient in it. Be sure to explain the lifting process to the patient before attempting to lift them the first time. The patient's weight must be centered over the base legs at all times. Do not lift a patient with the mast/boom assembly swiveled to either side. Always keep patient facing the caregiver operating the lift.

NOTE: Although it is recommended that two caregivers be used for all lifting preparation, transferring from and transferring to procedures, most equipment will permit proper operation by one caregiver. The use of one caregiver is based on the evaluation of the health care professional for each individual case.

DO NOT engage the rear locking casters when patient is in the lift. The wheels must be FREE to roll to allow the lift to center itself beneath the patient.

DO NOT roll the caster base over objects such as shag or deep pile carpeting, raised carpet bindings, thresholds, unpaved surfaces, outdoors, or any other obstructions that would create an imbalance of the patient lift. This could cause the patient lift to tip over.

 NEVER exceed the maximum weight capacity of the lifter.

NEVER push or pull on the lift boom. Pushing or pulling on the boom can cause the patient lift to tip over.

NEVER use the patient lift  to lift or transfer anything other than a patient.

To reduce the hazard of tipping over, spread the adjustable base on the ptient lift to their widest position before lifting anyone.

Use restraint straps for comatose, spastic, agitated or severely handicapped patients. Use restraints with a patient lift only with a physician’s prescription.

Be sure to check that the loops of the patient lift slings are securely attached to the lift hooks, as unsecured loops could result in slippage and injury to both the patient and the operator.

To prevent injury, keep open communication with the patient if possible. Ask the patient if heor she is comfortable and assure the patient that he or she will only be in the patient lift sling for a short time.

To Raise Lift: Base of lift must be spread to widest possible position. Push the up button.


To Lower Lift: Press down button. After patient reaches seat, push down on boom to slacken straps or chains.

Lifts can tip over. Keep base widened for stability. Never lock wheel locks or block wheels when lifting someone. Wheel locks are provided for parking. To lock casters, step on lever on top of casters. To unlock, step on off lever.

Manual Lift

To Raise Lift: Base of lift must be spread to widest possible position to maximize stability. Pump hydraulic handle. Steering handle may be held to steady lift.

To Lower Patient Lift: Open hydraulic pressure release knob by turning it counter clockwise, no more than one full turn. Release knob is located on the pump or near the pump handle.

Note – Manual Pump

Use pump to raise boom to position for lifting patient.
DO NOT lift up on end of boom to position for lifting patient as this causes air to be drawn in under ram, preventing lift pump from lifting when handle is pumped.
DO NOT press down hard on handle when bottom of stroke is reached.
It is common occurrence after a few hours of non-use for the boom to lower with no weight suspended from the end of the boom. This is not a faulty lift pump.

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