I'm working with a pt who is about 80lbs. The parents don't want a lift in the house because they feel it is more work than just lifting the patient. The parents also make excuses like the carpet makes the lift hard to push and its too big and doesn't look good in the room. My concern is that I don't want to be injured lifting or have my patient injured. There is the possibility for seizures while lifting or severe agitation while lifting that can increase the risk of injury. The patient will also try to kick, bite, and arch her/his back.
I spoke with my agency about my concerns and have made a few comments multiple times. I was told it is up to the parents and that if I don't feel safe lifting the patient that I don't have to. I told the agency that I don't want the parents to let me go because I'm not comfortable lifting the patient. I'm pretty sure that makes the agency liable if I get injured because they aren't doing what they have to for my safety. I don't have any back problems and I'd rather not take a risk when there are reasonable options available. I feel the agency should tell the family that they have to provide the nurses with a lift for the nurses safety and that the family doesn't have to use the lift if they dont want to. The family would be ok with a track lift, but ins. won't cover it and will only cover a manual lift. We aren't even provided a back brace.
I'm wondering if its a violation of OSHA. But I don't want to upset the agency. Because I know if I put in a complaint to OSHA that the agency would let me go. I understand the agencies want to bend over backwards to keep the family happy so they don't lose the case. And they would be ok to replace any nurse who gets injured. I would like to stay on the case since they don't have any others. They are a smaller agency and only staff to the cases instead of keeping lots of nurses hired without work. Any other options? Opinions? One other option I have is if the patient goes to school, I can get the assistants to do a 2 person lift with me.
Thanks in advance for responses!!
Sep 22, '12
by loriangel14 Guide
You have to put yourself first and refuse to lift the patient. The family doesn't care about your back really.Their excuses for not getting a lift are pretty flimsy.Plus if the pt. kicks, bites and arches their back there is a risk to the patient as well.I know a person that was dropped when someone was lifting them and they were seriously injured. I also had a coworker that was disabled permanently when lifting a patient.
Last edit by loriangel14 on Sep 25, '12