Several of the facilities I work with have experienced a high level of resistance to using gait belts and transfer assist devices. I attribute some of this to change. What do you suggest to convince the staff that these devices will help? Resistance is attributed to increased time to use, increased skin tears, resident resistance, etc.
Murray Risk Management and Insurance
We continually offer rebuttals for this type of staff resistance. For example:
- Studies show that in most instances it takes only a few extra moments to procure a lift, and staff might be avoiding a lifetime of pain and suffering.
- Studies show greater likelihood of skin tears during manual lifting, not assisted lifting.
- Resident resistance is largely unsubstantiated. Most residents feel safer and many actually enjoy being lifted in a mechanical lift.
If The Lift Doctor had a crystal ball, he would make a number of observations about efforts to confront staff resistance in the future:
- Stronger legislation, perhaps on a national level, might be in the wind.
- If resistance continues, enforcement mechanisms will likely become much more prevalent
- Employers and risk agencies will expend as much effort on cultural change management as they do on purchasing equipment and training personnel
Whether or not these visions come to pass, of course, is a subject of much debate. Meanwhile, The Lift Doctor is convinced that communication and culture change are vital requirements for success....thus the Safe Lifting Portal is dedicated to encouraging clear, consistent communication about global safe lifting progress and providing free advice on how to start a program, manage culture change, and elicit buy-in from caregivers. Staff must understand that manual patient handling is pass.
The Lift Doctor*