Best Practice for Safe Handling of Morbidly Obese Patients

14/03/2018 0 Comment(s)

Oxford hoists have a range of lifts to transport bariatric patients which are morbidly obese and need to be manoeuvred by nurses and care staff.


A list of Oxford Bariatric hoists are listed:


Oxford Midi 180 - lifts upto 180Kg / 28 Stone

Oxford Maxi 180 - lifts upto 180Kg / 28 Stone

Oxford Major 200 - lifts upto 200Kg / 31 Stone

Oxford Presence 227 - lifts upto 227Kg / 35 Stone

Oxford Stature 227 - lifts upto 227Kg / 35 Stone

Oxford Calibre 385 - lifts upto 385Kg / 60 Stone


A stand aid for bariatric service users:


Oxford Elevate 200 - Lifts upto 200Kg / 31 Stone



Bariatric service users are increasing and nursing as well as care staff need to be protected from injury, as well as many patients which are virtually unable to support themselves, consequently if the patient is not lifted correctly, the impact can effect the care provider, staff, the staff's family and service users confidence. The following will highlight key areas to focus on to ensure safety and continuity in the work place.


Education: If you're staff are not trained, your investment in equipment is futile.  We have visited a number of practices that simply damage equipment and put service users at risk due to lack of training.  Get your staff trained up and ensure they have annual refresher courses. Skimping on training will simply lead to potential greater costs down the road.


Right Equipment: Ensure you're purchasing bariatric hoists that meet your service users needs and can lift their weight. Patients should be weighed on admission and if hoisting is needed, the correct hoist that has a min SWL (Safe Working Load) that can actually lift the person needs to be selected, along with the correct Bariatric sling.


LOLER (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998): Servicing is essential to ensure your equipment is being maintained, to ensure operational readiness. Ensure engineers are weight testing lifting equipment, as well as tracking systems; If a engineer takes 15 minutes to service a hoist. you have to question his ability and knowledge, don't get ripped off. As k for proof these people are accredited.


Maintenance: Patients hoists in the community generally need to be serviced annually and a 6 Month inspection post service to ensure it's operational.  Poor battery management is the most frequent reason for hoist failure.  Good practice is to have two batteries per hoist. As one is in operation and one on charge.  When one loses charge, it can be put on charge and the charged battery is ready to be used. Should the hoists be used more frequently, you may want to consider a 3rd battery as batteries need a minimum of 6-8 hours to fully charge.


Contingency: What's more important is what's your contingency in the event of hoist failure?  When manouvering Bariatric service users, it's not reasonable to expect your staff and colleagues to manually manouever and position morbidly obese service users.Staff will be more prone to injury and staff moral can be impacted. Management may not have the financials to purchase a backup system, but more and more care associations are part of groups, you may be able to borrow a system from an alternative location or look at hiring solutions from 3rd party suppliers.


Northampton Healthcare state:


Manual handling operations form a significant part of the daily work activity within all NHS Trusts, in particular the moving and handling of patients, stores and supplies which affects nurses, domestics, porters, estates workers and admin support staff.
  Over half of the accidents reported within the NHS each year are associated with manual handling causing musculoskeletal injuries.


The Trust has made a clear statement of intent within its Health and Safety Policy to do its reasonable best to secure the health, safety and welfare at work of all its employees, and to adopt corporate policies and procedures, which set out safe systems of work to ensure compliance with relevant statutory provisions, with that duty extending to Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992.


Additionally, employees are reminded that they have a responsibility to take reasonable care of themselves and others, and to co-operate with the Trust with regard to the Health and Safety Policy.