So what exactly is a bed alarm?

  1. 0
    I keep reading about bed alarms yet I have no idea what they are or what function they preform.
    Perhaps its because my facility is so cheap that we have beds from the 1970s and skeleton crew staff for both shifts.
    Does a bed alarm prevent bedsores?
  2. Get the Hottest Nursing Topics Straight to Your Inbox!

  3. 1,553 Visits
    Find Similar Topics
  4. 20 Comments so far...

  5. 2
    haha no a bed alarm is able to sense when a patient gets/fall out of bed.....it uses a pressure sensor to do its job
    yooperPN and Esme12 like this.
  6. 0
    Wanted to also add that we tend to call them pressure ulcers these days. he only way to prevent pressure ulcers is to frequently perform skin assessments on the client. This means looking at their skin. I have seen many of my fellow students be afraid to undress that patient and really do a good assessment.

    The intervention side of it is the patient MUST be turned every two hours at the minimum.

    In my mind, hospital acquired pressure ulcers are negligence and could even be considered criminal. There is no excuse.

    At my clinical facility they have these fancy ocillating air mattresses that are supposed to help with this. After a lengthy conversation with the skin nurse at the facility, he feels they do more harm than good because nurses feel they no longer have to turn the clients once they have the special mattress.

    Sorry, but this really is a pet peeve of mine....
  7. 0
    Bed alarms are to alarm you when a patient gets out of bed. They should NOT take place of frequent rounding, however. I have seen patients fall even with a bed alarm activated - they are just that fast! I have seen two different types of bed alarms. One is a little box with a long rectangular pad that goes underneath all of the linens. The pad has a wire that connects to a little box that you can hang on the side rail or some other place, and then that box also plugs into the wall. Some beds have bed alarms already built into them, you just have to push a button to activate them.
  8. 4
    You kow abba, thinking more about what you said, It would be an awesome ideato program bed alarms to go off if they detect no movement in two hours as that would signal that the patient has ot been turned....

    I think you are on to something there
    Siddhartha, RescueNinja, loriangel14, and 1 other like this.
  9. 1
    A bed alarm is only as good as the nearest person who hears it and responds. I have not seen bed alarms the alert the nurse at the nurse's station if she/he is far away from the patient's room nor are they hooked into the call bell system so that a light will flash over the patient's door. There has to be someone within earshot to respond to the alarm sound. If staff is very limited, then this will be unlikely to happen and the bed alarm will be sounding without anyone responding.
    turnforthenurseRN likes this.
  10. 3
    Quote from turnforthenurseRN
    Bed alarms are to alarm you when a patient gets out of bed. They should NOT take place of frequent rounding, however. I have seen patients fall even with a bed alarm activated - they are just that fast! I have seen two different types of bed alarms. One is a little box with a long rectangular pad that goes underneath all of the linens. The pad has a wire that connects to a little box that you can hang on the side rail or some other place, and then that box also plugs into the wall. Some beds have bed alarms already built into them, you just have to push a button to activate them.
    Yup...the alarm helps you find them faster...
  11. 0
    We have beds that you can zero out, weigh with the pt in it, and then the bed alarm functions off of movement based on the weight of the pt. Also, if the bed is plugged into the wall (as it should be... but sometimes it's not) the alarm calls our phone so if we are not close enough to hear it, we will know once our phone rings.
  12. 1
    Also keep in mind that patients are clever - I have seen them figure out how to deactivate both types of bed alarms described. One patient would pile heavy books on the alarm strip then get up. The beds with the built in alarms are even easier for patients to turn off on their own.

    Unless a patient is in a specialty bed (low bed, Clinitron, bariatric bed, etc.). all of the beds in our hospital have built in alarms. They are also wirelessly connected to the call bell system so you don't have to play "find the alarm." There are even three different sensitivity settings on the beds. Most patients who require the alarms are fine on the least sensitive setting - it allows them to dangle their legs a bit (depending on the placement of the patient's posterior) and I've only seen a patient require the most sensitive (you can't even move your legs!) once or twice.
    blackbird singing likes this.
  13. 0
    I find bed alarms bothersome. The ones we had before you attach it to the pt's clothing so when the pt moves, it comes off the alarm and start sounding. The new ones which comes with the bed are more so annoying because sometimes the pt is just turning in bed and the thing goes off. No matter where i am on the unit the alarm sure finds it way to get me. Even other pt's have been like whats that


Top