With the ever-increasing pressure to improve levels of care whilst finding a balance between value with funding, hospitals and aged care facilities need to look towards understanding the smarter solution for both staff and patients/residents. To this end, ceiling hoist systems are the global standard for care; especially as hospitals and aged care facilities introduce “No Lift or Minimal Lift Policies” into their workplaces. But why is this? There are certainly cost considerations, however the right solution comes down to value and safety. And we all want to do what is right.
All in all, the better we can manage ‘value’ the safer and easier things will be. More suitable solutions based on smarter system designs will lead to increased practical safety and overall longevity. Ceiling hoists may be considered a greater challenge to fund at times, however that is only short-term thinking. We need to think in the medium to longer term as well. Less effective solutions can add costs such as those associated with workplace injuries; compensation adds stress to budgets, excessive loss of hours and potentially increased insurance premiums.
Rooms with insufficient assistive technology required to transfer patients from point-to-point sometimes cannot be utilised at all. For example, when a bariatric patient needs to be catered for. This has the potential to leave a vacant bed, which no-one wants. Vacant beds and rooms not clinically suitable for patients or residents contribute to reduced capacity to care, and a direct loss of functional viability.
The installation of ceiling hoists and regular training and education has proven to be the ideal solution for efficiency across the spectrum of quality care. The most appropriate room covering lifting solution has been proven to reduce workplace injuries for care staff and be more time efficient when moving and handling people within their bedroom. This in turn has a significant impact on cost management in these areas and allow More Time to Care. Ceiling hoist systems also allow for maximum efficiency of room occupancy by reducing barriers around transferring patients from point-to-point or around the room.
Ceiling hoist systems are therefore a smart long term cost-effective solution. They also embrace the functional safety and wellbeing of staff. The ‘right’ solution provides the best level of care for hospital patients and aged care residents alike.
New installation methods, various hoist styles, new rail types and even custom colours are now available. Recessed or wall rail system now provide a significant visual improvement, and carpentry solutions can hide hoists motors into cabinets as easily as the click of an architect’s mouse.
If the solution is designed with all considerations in mind, there really are no compelling reasons to refrain from considering ceiling hoist systems in any facility – especially when clinical advantages for staff and residents / patients are far ahead of the alternatives, and the longer term cost savings are help balance the question of value, safety and responsible care.
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“Reductions were observed in injury rates, lost workday injury rates, workers’ compensation costs, and musculoskeletal symptoms after deployment of mechanical patient lifts.“
Source: Li, j. et al. (2004) Use of mechanical patient lifts decreased musculoskeletal symptoms and injuries among health care workers.
“The implementation of a ceiling lift program generated economic benefits due to reduced compensation costs within 3 years of intervention.“
Source: Chhokar R. Et al. (2005) The three-year economic benefits of a ceiling lift intervention aimed to reduce healthcare worker injuries.
“The rate of MSI caused by lifting/transferring patients was significantly reduced (58%) after installation. ROI from direct savings within 4 years.”
Sources: Ronald LA et al. (2002) Effectiveness of installing overhead ceiling lifts. Reducing musculoskeletal injuries in an extended care hospital unit.