Types of Hoists Used in Nursing Homes

Hoists are a crucial tool for moving and handling in aged care.

These simple but valuable tools assist in moving people who would struggle to re-position themselves in bed, move to a chair, or even get in and out of a bathtub on their own.

With a hoist, it takes very little physical effort to lift and move a person from one position to another. The right tool can help a range of people, including seniors who want to remain in their own homes despite mobility issues, and people living in a care home.

So, what kind of hoists are available?

The two most common options are:

  • Floor hoists
  • Ceiling Hoists

What are Floor Hoists?

A floor hoist is a mechanical lifting device that comes in two different styles. One option is to have your hoist mounted to a wall or floor, so it’s permanently available in a room. This is common in hospitals and some aged care facilities. The other option is to choose a mobile floor hoist that you can move around your facility, using it as needed.

Mobile or “wheeled” hoists are often the most popular choice because of their flexibility. You can take a wheeled hoist with you into a patient’s bedroom, a bathroom, or social living area, and use it to lift almost any kind of patient. Mobile floor hoists are also particularly useful for emergencies. If someone falls and needs help getting up, a care assistant can retrieve a hoist and move the individual safely – even in an environment where ceiling and mounted hoists aren’t available.

Benefits of floor hoists include:

  • Potential for mobility
  • Ease of use
  • Designs to suit a range of patients
  • Protects both care provider and patient from injury
  • Ideal for less frequent lifting situations

What are Ceiling Hoists?

A ceiling hoist is a more advanced form of patient lift, mounted onto the ceiling. Usually, these hoists are powered by electricity, although you can find manual units available from some manufacturers. Unlike floor hoists, there’s no need to manually move the lift once a patient is situated safely in the sling. With a ceiling hoist, the station can move safely and securely along a pre-established track, minimising safety risks for carers and seniors.

Ceiling hoists with mounted tracks are an excellent choice for a range of care environments, including assisted living facilities, care homes, and hospitals. Although a ceiling hoist requires careful consideration of the structural strength of a ceiling, it provides simplicity and safety for carers and patients.

Benefits of ceiling hoists include:

  • They take up less space than a floor-standing hoist
  • They can be installed anywhere with strong enough ceiling supports
  • Some track systems can consist of turntables that allow patients to be hosted from one track to another
  • They’re safer for both the senior and the carer, as no manual movement is necessary
  • Ceiling hoists can move seniors quickly and easily to a range of locations
  • Only needs the input of a single carer

Ceiling hoists are often the best choice when the people you’re moving might be too heavy, or too fragile to be moved manually. One person can easily and safely move a patient with a ceiling hoist without having to wait for assistance from another professional.

Choosing the Right Hoists

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution to choosing the ideal hoist.

Sometimes, a ceiling hoist will be the best solution, providing simplicity and safety, even when multiple care providers aren’t available for moving and handling processes. Other times, a floor hoist will offer the simplicity and flexibility a carer needs to assist a senior in getting out of a difficult or dangerous position.

Many care facilities deploy both floor and ceiling hoist facilities, to ensure they have the best of both worlds. Discuss your options with HLS today. We have some of the most highly-rated and reliable hoists in the market ready for you.