Weight nurses required to lift?

  1. 0 Does anyone know how much weight a nurse is required to be able to lift? I know nurses have to be able to lift patients. Also in psych facilities nurses and mental health workers have to restrain patients.
  2. Visit  psychnurse1998 profile page

    About psychnurse1998

    psychnurse1998 has '10' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'psych.'. From 'Northern calif'; 69 Years Old; Joined Feb '08; Posts: 165; Likes: 24.

    16 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  BrokenRNheart profile page
    6
    Things have changed as far as nursing. This is the last career that weight restrictions have been addressed in.

    Hospitals are expected to provide lift devices and you are expected to use them and protect yourself. So, it might be around 50 lbs on job description. But you are protected as far as lifting - FINALLY. Just another area where nurses were expected to be superhumans.

    I was on a lift committee on my last job. You will find that most people don't take advantage of the lift devices. Especially us ole' timers who lived without them. I have destroyed my back and neck on the job and I push to protect your back. Especially entering the field. I am 46 and can't see me making it to retirement. Protect your back, you are finally allowed to do it after so many of us have screwed ours up.

    You have to protect yourself because your employer won't.
    Sandy_dfw, Dolce, Apollorn, and 3 others like this.
  4. Visit  psychnurse1998 profile page
    0
    Quote from BrokenRNheart
    Things have changed as far as nursing. This is the last career that weight restrictions have been addressed in.

    Hospitals are expected to provide lift devices and you are expected to use them and protect yourself. So, it might be around 50 lbs on job description. But you are protected as far as lifting - FINALLY. Just another area where nurses were expected to be superhumans.

    I was on a lift committee on my last job. You will find that most people don't take advantage of the lift devices. Especially us ole' timers who lived without them. I have destroyed my back and neck on the job and I push to protect your back. Especially entering the field. I am 46 and can't see me making it to retirement. Protect your back, you are finally allowed to do it after so many of us have screwed ours up.

    You have to protect yourself because your employer won't.
    I agree. I think many nurses when a patient falls, we assume 2 people should be enough, when maybe 3 or more may be needed. I know someone that got hurt like that and had to quit nursing for another career. And as you stated, using a lift, to help lift a very heavy patient. One facility I know has a 100 pound lift requirement, but I doubt it is enforced since some of the new hirees seem so frail.
  5. Visit  nyapa profile page
    1
    Ours is simply a 'no-risk-lift' policy. We are expected to use lifting devices at all times, or else we aren't covered by insurance. Yet sometimes this is impractical. For example, using Jordan frames with patients in traction. Or trying to catch someone that loses their balance. Or moving someone up the bed, which you know you are quite capable of doing with someone else, but the hospital wants you to use a 'slippery sam'; the latter often takes longer.

    I wish we could use some lifts on lighter patients. I was always a fan of the shoulder lift.
    psychnurse1998 likes this.
  6. Visit  psychnurse1998 profile page
    0
    Quote from nyapa
    Ours is simply a 'no-risk-lift' policy. We are expected to use lifting devices at all times, or else we aren't covered by insurance. Yet sometimes this is impractical. For example, using Jordan frames with patients in traction. Or trying to catch someone that loses their balance. Or moving someone up the bed, which you know you are quite capable of doing with someone else, but the hospital wants you to use a 'slippery sam'; the latter often takes longer.

    I wish we could use some lifts on lighter patients. I was always a fan of the shoulder lift.
    Great points..I had not thought about the risks a lighter patient can also pose. I hadnt heard of a slippery Sam.
  7. Visit  nyapa profile page
    1
    A slippery sam is a piece of slippery cloth, often sail material, that can be folded in half, rolled under the patient, and be used to move them without causing friction to the patient's skin, or damage to the nurses back, as there is no lifting involved (generally!)
    psychnurse1998 likes this.
  8. Visit  Angie O'Plasty, RN profile page
    1
    My job description says that I need to be able to lift up to 60 lbs. by myself.

    There is no such thing as "light duty" unless at the discretion of the unit manager. One unit manager refuses work to anyone on light duty and has been known to use the "no light duty" to get rid of people. Another accommodates them.

    We now have a no-lift policy and I insist on availing myself of all the latest gadgets to lift patients. The policy protects everyone -- me, the patient, and the hospital. Plus, I'm in my mid-50's and I refuse deal with any pains that I don't have to.
    psychnurse1998 likes this.
  9. Visit  Miami NightNurse profile page
    1
    Where I work it's 80 lbs. But at the same time we now have lift equipment and if you don't use it and hurt your back you are on your own. I'm not allowed to lift more than 20 lbs. due to having a coronary artery stent placed but they let me work on the floor with that restriction and of course being a nurse I've lifted more than I should have
    psychnurse1998 likes this.
  10. Visit  Scrubby profile page
    2
    The no lift policy really is a joke at my work because there are some things that you simply have to lift. We have to lift genesis trays, instrument trays etc. lift patients arms and legs when they are being prepped, we have to lift patients into all sorts of positions, lift legs into stirrups, lift heavy equipment. And of course the spinal and jackson table requires lifting to be done.

    I'm concerned i have done something to my back. Everytime i have a day where there is loads of manual handling no matter what i do, (i bend the knees etc) i go home with a sore lower back and shooting pains down my legs.
    psychnurse1998 and nyapa like this.
  11. Visit  nyapa profile page
    0
    Quote from Scrubby
    The no lift policy really is a joke at my work because there are some things that you simply have to lift. We have to lift genesis trays, instrument trays etc. lift patients arms and legs when they are being prepped, we have to lift patients into all sorts of positions, lift legs into stirrups, lift heavy equipment. And of course the spinal and jackson table requires lifting to be done.

    I'm concerned i have done something to my back. Everytime i have a day where there is loads of manual handling no matter what i do, (i bend the knees etc) i go home with a sore lower back and shooting pains down my legs.
    My point exactly. Its all weighted in favour of the hospital and insurance companies...
    Back pain is not funny (((scrubby)))
  12. Visit  psychnurse1998 profile page
    0
    Quote from Angie O'Plasty, RN
    My job description says that I need to be able to lift up to 60 lbs. by myself.

    There is no such thing as "light duty" unless at the discretion of the unit manager. One unit manager refuses work to anyone on light duty and has been known to use the "no light duty" to get rid of people. Another accommodates them.

    We now have a no-lift policy and I insist on availing myself of all the latest gadgets to lift patients. The policy protects everyone -- me, the patient, and the hospital. Plus, I'm in my mid-50's and I refuse deal with any pains that I don't have to.
    thanks for the spefic 60 lbs you are require to lift by yourself. I dont thiink you are required to prove, before you are hired, and told.."here is a 60 lb. weight, lift it". However, if you face that 60 pound weight, during your employment, be on notice you will be required to lift it. The implications this has, someone that could never lift 60 lbs might get hired, and it may never come an issue. I have had nurses ask me..could you please help me pick this up? Or as you said, one can make use of the latest lifts available.

    I was thinking, trying to lift any patient weighing more than 120 pounds would exceed the 60 pound weight limit, without patient assist. Perhaps thats why they have he "no lift policy".
  13. Visit  psychnurse1998 profile page
    0
    Quote from Scrubby
    The no lift policy really is a joke at my work because there are some things that you simply have to lift. We have to lift genesis trays, instrument trays etc. lift patients arms and legs when they are being prepped, we have to lift patients into all sorts of positions, lift legs into stirrups, lift heavy equipment. And of course the spinal and jackson table requires lifting to be done.

    I'm concerned i have done something to my back. Everytime i have a day where there is loads of manual handling no matter what i do, (i bend the knees etc) i go home with a sore lower back and shooting pains down my legs.
    The no lift policy seems to deny the reality that one has to lift. When I hurt my back one time, I was prescribed back excerises to strenthen back and abd muscles, to help prevent back injuries, in addition to good posture, and using good body mechanics. I wish I had learned this earlier in my life. The VA in my area has a video they show you in physical therapy after you have had a back injury, I wish every employee would view that.
  14. Visit  glasgow3 profile page
    2
    A few comments if I may:

    If a person is injured at the work place, I always suggest that they consult with an attorney who specializes in such matters. Initial consults are usually free of charge. Work comp laws can vary drastically from state to state and I would not allow my employer to be the sole source of information regarding my rights under the laws of my individual state.

    I would be skeptical of any employer who tells an employee that they will not be covered for an injury incurred while lifting because they did not use lifting equipment furnished by that employer. Work comp is generally a no fault situation: In return for guaranteed/specified benefits for an injured worker, that worker can not sue the employer over and above those benefits. Are there exceptions? Of course, but that's the usual deal. The point is, even if the worker does something stupid (for ex removing the safety guard from a power tool) and that worker cuts off his hand, that worker is still covered. In most cases that worker CAN later be fired, however, for failing to follow company rules.

    Now I don't know where the poster resides who believes that nurses have a right to no manual lift workplaces, but in the vast majority of states, nurses have no such right. Progress is being made, but even in some states with no manual lift laws on the books, the language/guarantees are so weak that most nurses still lift patients by hand.

    Also, while using good posture and body mechanics is helpful, doing so will NOT prevent lifting injuries. The ample research clearly shows that without appropriate equipment it is simply not possible to prevent injuries.

    Finally, with respect to the original question, the employer can specify on the job description whatever weight they choose for nurses IF that employer can show the essential functions of the job necessitates being able to lift that amount. If an employee can not perform those essential functions with or without reasonable accomodation, the employer is under no obligation to retain that employee.

    The whole thing can be quite complex....union contracts, state laws, facility policies, federal laws all can have an effect on a given situation/case.

    Which brings me back to my original recommendation....if weight lifting requirements are adversely affecting your employment status, or if you have been injured at work, see an attorney to learn your rights.
    3rdcareerRN and I love my cat! like this.


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