Lack of manual handling equipment comprises nurses’ safety, says report
A lack of manual handling equipment is compromising the workplace safety of nurses and their patients, according to a survey by Nursing Times.
Some two thirds of nurses believe that not having suitable ergonomic products and equipment for manual handling compromises their safety, and that of their patients.
The survey was based on responses from 600 Nursing Times readers.
Just under half of nurses said the products and equipment they used in their everyday work did not meet their own needs or their patients’.
The most common complaints highlighted a lack of moving and manual handling equipment such as hoists and slide sheets.
Around 40% said they were aware of products or equipment that could improve safety, patient care or the efficiency of nursing staff.
But only a third they always received training or instruction before using products or equipment for the first time.
One respondent said: “We have one hoist and one sling for the use of four patients who require this equipment several times daily.” I dread to think what will happen if we contaminate the sling, which is used for toileting purposes.
Another said: “We have old rickety couches on which to treat patients, including smear taking. They don’t go up or down and we all have backache.”