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Lifting and Transferring 


If a client begins to fall: 

  • Once a client has started to fall, it is almost impossible to stop the fall.  

  • Instead of trying to stop the fall, try to guide the client to the floor.  

  • Once the client is on the floor, get help to lift him. 

  • Lifting from the floor

  • You might find that someone has slipped to the floor but is not seriously injured. He or she may be able to help you help him or her up.  

  • Always get a coworker to help you get a client up if the client cannot assist you. Assistance of four to six people may be required. When appropriate, use a mechanical lift or hoist to raise a client.

  • Roll the client onto a blanket or lift sheet.  

  • Have two or more people stand on each side. Each person should kneel on one knee and get a secure hold on the blanket. On the count of three, everyone should lift the client and stand up, moving the client onto a bed or stretcher. 

Transferring in and out of a car:

  • Put the front seat of the car as far back as possible.                              

  • Position the wheelchair at a 90° angle to the car seat.

  • Bend your knees and hips in a squat.

  • Place your arms underneath the person’s armpits and around the upper part of his back. He may place his arms around your shoulders, not your neck. Grasp the person’s upper back and do not pull under his arms. Hold him close to you.

  • Straighten your legs and hips slightly as you smoothly lift the person’s torso into the car, placing his buttocks on the seat. Move your feet to turn, do not twist.

  • Be sure his buttocks are as far back towards the driver’s side as possible before lifting his legs into the car. When lifting his legs, keep your back straight. 

Pulling a client up in bed  

  • Always get help when pulling a client up.  

  • Place a draw or lift sheet under the client.

  • Remove the client’s pillow from under his head and place it against the head of the bed to provide a cushion between the client’s head and the headboard.

  • Place the bed at a comfortable height for you and your coworker.

  • Both you and the coworker should bend your knees and push with your feet.

  • Grasp the draw or lift sheet firmly, holding the sheet close to the client’s body.

  • Lean in the direction you want to move the client.  

  • Instruct the client to lower his chin to his chest if possible. If the client cannot hold his head up, be sure the lift sheet is supporting his neck and head.

  • Ask the client to bend his knees so he can assist by pushing backwards. • On the count of three, lift the draw sheet and pull the client up.  

Pulling a client up in a chair:

  • Have the client fold his arms across his chest. Lock the wheelchair brakes.

  • Stand behind the client, bend your knees, and wrap your arms around him, hugging his torso securely by folding your arms just under his in front.  

  • Straighten your legs, lifting the client’s torso up and back in the chair. 


Moving a person from the bed to a stretcher:  

  • Put the person on a lift sheet.  

  • Position the bed at waist height.

  • Position the bed slightly higher than the stretcher and lock the brakes on both the bed and the stretcher.

  • The worker pulling the client toward them should be the stronger of the two. This worker will stand on the opposite side of the stretcher and may need to kneel on the stretcher.

  • Pull the client to the edge of the bed.

  • Place the client’s legs on the stretcher. Have the pusher kneel on the bed, holding the lift sheet.                              

  • On the count of three, grasp the pull sheet and slide the client on to the stretcher. Do not reach across the client.