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In many instances, a patient with limited mobility will need the assistance of a patient lift with a sling. These devices help caregivers transfer patients from the bed, to a chair, to a wheelchair and more.
Why Do Patients Need Slings?
There are several instances where the use of patient lifts are necessary- they allow for the safe lifting and transferring of patients that are weak, disabled or when a caregiver is attending to a bariatric client. They are used in conjunction with a hoist to reduce the strain placed on the caregiver.
Patient Lifts improve the care of patients as well as the caregiver significantly, by providing safety and in most cases, providing less pain during transfers.
Patient Lifts, also known by the brand name Hoyer® Lifts, come in many different sizes with many options which is why it is best to ask a professional for their advice. The boom, or arm that jets out from the lift also comes in different lengths and heights which should be matched to the patients’ and caregivers needs, such as:
- How deep or how far does the patient need to be in order for them to sit properly into a lift chair, wheelchair, or even the bed?
- How high does the arm need to lift in order to raise them off the top pf the bed to allow the caregiver to back them away and into the chair?
All of these questions are important things to consider when matching a patient lift to a patient.
It is also important to use the correct sling for the patients’ comfort as well as the safety of the patient. In order to choose the right sling, there are also important questions to ask yourself.
- Will you use this sling for toileting?
- Is it only to transfer to and from bed to a wheelchair or sitting chair?
- Will the patient sit on that sling all day or will you be able to pull it away easily and place it back on when you are ready to lift them again?
There are so many slings to choose from and all have great benefits. Asking your professional for help is important to both fit and safety. If you feel that the company you are calling is only giving you one option, we suggest you call Affordable Medical Supply to help you in making this decision.
Affordable Medical Supply specializes in the sale of patient lifts and slings, and will also educate the caregiver on the use of both items. Our commitment is to ensure that every customer feels prioritized and receives consistent and reliable services, innovative solutions and superior care management support.
A Guide to Choosing the Correct Sling
Each patient is unique, and it is important to select a sling that best suits the patient for comfort and practicality. A patient assessment will help determine the most effective sling, hoist and transfer method to use. Some patients are unable to assist with the transfer, while others are more able. Whether the patient has control over their head and upper body will also determine the sling chosen.
Choosing the correct fabric is an important consideration when deciding on a sling. Factors such as a patient’s weight, stability, and muscle tone will all play a role in deciding on the correct fabric sling. There are mesh slings that can be used in showering and toileting, and there are padded slings for comfort. These slings types are also half slings, universal slings, full body slings, sitting slings and many more.
Sizing is another important element when deciding on a sling. In addition to comfort, choosing the appropriately sized sling will improve the patient’s safety during lifts. Does the head need to be supported? Does the client have trunk stability? In choosing the sling, there are many factors that come into play and each one needs serious consideration in order to use the patient lift in the many different transfer that occur each day. The type of transfer, patient’s medical condition, pressure sensitivity, need for full back support, head support and padding are all necessary considerations. The environment also needs to be prepared by ensuring that there is sufficient space and clear of obstacles.
The sling must be compatible with the patient lift. As not all manufacturer’s sizing is exact, it is important to ask questions and have an assessment by a professional.
Common Tasks and Slings
In addition to various size and weight recommendations, there are certain slings recommended for specific tasks such as:
- Seat/Back Sling (w/co) – commode to bath, chair to chair, bed to chair, and chair to commode.
- Stand Assist Slings – toilet, chair to chair, bed to chair, and chair to commode.
- Full Body Sling – chair to chair, bed to chair, floor to bed.
- Full Body Sling (w/co) – toilet, chair to chair, bed to chair, floor to bed, and chair to commode.
- U Slings – toilet, chair to chair, and chair to commode.
Renting the Correct Sling for Patient Lifts
A patient’s needs can change regularly so it’s important to constantly monitor the need for a different sling, a more supportive or a better suited sling. A sling should always support the patient’s torso and legs. All slings should be smooth and not wrinkled when placing it on the client due to skin breakdown and other important issues when a sling is under a patient.
In summary, a patient lift and sling should make the job of lifting a patient easier and safer a lot easier. Renting a sling will allow for an affordable investment in the best interest of the patient and caregiver.
Affordable Medical Supply offers a wide range rental equipment to the public and matches medical equipment based on both the patient and the caregiver’s needs. Contact us today and allow our team to provide you with a higher level of care.