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Carers UK Forum • Home alone needing a hoist to transfer?!
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Home alone needing a hoist to transfer?!

Posted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 4:33 pm
by bowlingbun
My mum was admitted to hospital last week. Although her UTI has cleared up, she is now so weak in her arms, for various reasons, that she cannot get up off the commode to get back into bed. Physios have said that the nurses should hoist mum in and out of bed for safety reasons. I saw the discharge nurse again today, she seems to think that this will not be a barrier to mum going home, with the right aids etc. As far as I'm concerned it opens up an enormous can or worms. Mum sleeps in a small bedroom with her main bedroom out of action, and undecorated, as it has been used for a furniture store for years (Don't ask!!) Does anyone else have a hoist dependant relative living at home alone? What do I need to ensure happens? Is a hospital bed vital to use with a hoist? How many visits per day will mum need (I can't do anything physical for her). Fortunately, I do now have permission to throw away/sell some stuff in the garage to make room for the stuff in the main bedroom. Please share any advice, pitfalls etc. My gut feeling is that this idea is doomed to failure, am I being realistic or pessimistic???

Re: Home alone needing a hoist to transfer?!

Posted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:59 pm
by Eun
We were informed that where a hoist is in place (in our case a ceiling hoist) for health and safety reasons there has to be two workers to operate it. Robert has two workers in the morning to hoist him out of bed and at night his dad and I do it. If he needs to use the bathroom during the day his dad and I would have to do the hoisting then too. I don't know how it would go if your mum is on her own though. With regard to using a hospital bed with the hoist. It certainly helps Robert cos the height can go up and down and the head of the bed can be raised as he is being lowered down onto the bed making it more comfortable for him but bear in mind Rob has had a spinal fusion operation and his back does not bend. There is an issue in identifying the particular sling needed to be used in conjunction with the hoist for example Rob has a specialised Muscular Dystrophy sling for someone who has had a spinal fusion. I can't think of anything else to tell you but if there is anything you can think of please don't hesitate to ask me.


Re: Home alone needing a hoist to transfer?!

Posted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 7:10 pm
by Bluebird
I think that most hoists need to be used with a hospital/profiling bed because as Eun said, there has to be enough room underneath the bed for the hoist. I don't have one because I am on my own and it is twice as difficult to lift Mum into the sling than it is to just lift her myself.

As we are all so different, I really think that the discharge nurse needs to go to your Mums home so that she can see the space and work out your Mums requirements.
You can't make all these decisions by yourself as you don't know what equipment they can provide and they don't know what is needed without seeing Mums house.

Good luck, I know how daunting it can be xx

Re: Home alone needing a hoist to transfer?!

Posted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 7:33 pm
by bowlingbun
The physios and OT will see mum several more times before working out firstly whether some rehabilitation would be useful (promised two years ago, but never materialised). If not, then they will look in detail about what mum needs, and her house in general. Juggler has given me a lot to think about, her dad was in a home for the last six months of his life, and it was a very positive experience. I'm left wondering whether mum would be better in residential care too. Mum is keen to stay at home if possible, I don't think she realises yet that the need for a hoist might be permanent. I'm concerned about all the practicalities involved in making being at home a viable option, keen to avoid spending a very long time getting the room ready only to find it's a situation which falls apart almost immediately. If her legs can't work any more, then that will mean a permanent wheelchair, and her bungalow is most definitely not wheelchair friendly. As her arms are so weak, she couldn't use a self propelled wheel chair. The only accessible toilet is in the far corner of the bathroom, definitely no room anywhere in there for a hoist, for either toileting or bathing. Most of all, and this may sound very selfish indeed, I'm afraid for my own health if I have to do so much extra work - my consultant has ordered me not to do any caring at all. I've had huge problems with my son with SLD and the rest of this week will be spent finalising his care package. I'm not easily frightened, but that's how I feel tonight.