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Safe Transfers

A ‘transfer’ in a nursing home setting generally refers to moving a patient from a bed to a wheelchair.   Transfers are usually done two ways: using nursing assistants or mechanically (Hoyer lift).  The type of transfer depends mainly on the patients physical condition.  If a patient is capable of providing some assistance, a staff lift (one or two person transfer) is generally done.  However, if a patient is paralyzed or suffers from physical disability, the use of a mechanized lift may be required to safely transfer the patient.

The choice of how to transfer a patient from a bed to a wheelchair is up to the facility.  A determination of the type of transfer should be part of the evaluation when a person is admitted to the facility and for quarterly reviews of nursing home patient needs.  It is crucial for the staff at the facility to use the properly predetermined transfer technique or the nursing home resident is at risk to injury.

Below are videos demonstrating the proper transfer technique for both the ‘manual’ method and using a Hoyer lift.

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