Across the UK, thousands of people rely on hoists every day. For people with disabilities that limit their mobility, hoists are so important for maintaining good quality of life, a patient hoist allows a low mobility individual to move from bed to the bath or from a wheelchair to a lounge chair.
Hoisted transfers are used for many daily tasks and being lifted and transferred from a bed to a chair can be a challenging experience for both the individual and their caregiver.
At Vivid Care, we understand the importance of finding the right chair for people who are hoisted and a question we get asked a lot is:
“What’s the best kind of chair for someone that’s hoisted?”
The short answer is a care chair.
In this guide, we’ll explain what makes these medical grade mobility recliners so ideal for the home or hospital care of hoisted elderly or disabled people. We’ll also give you some top tips for choosing the right care chair for someone.
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If you’re not familiar with care chairs, here’s a quick explanation…
A care chair is a highly advanced type of specialist seating, essentially medical grade recliner chair on wheels.
Other seating options, like rise recliners, are typically used for people who are still mobile but have some difficulties with sitting and standing, posture and pressure care. Whereas care chairs are used for people with more complex needs.
Medical recliner care chairs are considered the best chairs for the care of disabled and elderly users because of their extra support for transfers, repositioning, and postural management options.
There are 3 key features you’ll find on all care chairs:
Here, we’ll be looking at the medical recliner chairs on wheels that are also known as Care Chairs, for more background information and detail please read our ‘What is a care chair?’ article.
The best chairs for disabled, elderly and low mobility care will allow for carers to use a hoist to perform transfers if required.
The simple answer is that care chairs are designed for use with hoists.
We have supplied seating for over 50 years and have found that when we recommend a care chair…it is usually for the home care of a hoisted elderly, disabled or low mobility individual who is hoisted.
Made to be mobile and portable with lots of room for a mobile hoist thanks to their wheels and raised base, these home care chairs are built to make hoisted transfers much easier for everyone involved.
During the course of a day, low mobility, elderly or disabled patients/users may require hoisting from a static chair and into a mobile wheelchair that allows them to get around.
With a medical recliner chair that rests on wheels, if you need to move someone to another room, there is no need to move them out of their chair.
Simply take off the brakes and push this wheeled chair where you want to go! This is perfect for home care environments where users may want to be in various rooms across the day and a medical recliner chair on wheels accommodates well for this.
This saves time and energy for carers. With no set up of a hoist needed, no sling preparation or physical lifting involved. This medical grade recliner chair can simply be wheeled wherever needed.
Crucially, this is also much better for the person being transferred. No matter how good your hoist system is, being hoisted is inconvenient and unpleasant. Lots of people can find the process uncomfortable or distressing.
Being transferred in their chair is much more practical and dignified. It also means people can often be moved from room to room without being disturbed if they are sleeping.
With the wheeled base of this portable care chair coming into its own during the day, there are times when a caregiver may need to use a hoist, e.g. to transfer someone into bed. In this situation, a care chairs once again makes things easier.
The base of a care chair is raised slightly off the ground – because of the wheels. This means a mobile hoist fits perfectly around the chair.
You can position the base of the hoist right under the chair. This helps to make the transfer quicker, safer, and easier.
Care chairs support people’s underlying medical conditions
There’s more to care chairs than supporting hoisted transfers.
When you’re choosing a chair for someone who is hoisted, you also need to think about the reasons why they are hoisted.
Generally, if someone needs hoisted transfers it’s because they have a medical condition that affects their mobility.
Disabilities and diseases that commonly require a person to be hoisted when providing care include:
These conditions, amongst others, affect someone’s ability to support themselves whilst sitting as well as their ability to stand and move around independently.
A supportive care chair will have all the features and functions needed to properly support the posture and positioning of someone who is immobile.
Here are a few examples:
If all care chairs include wheels, tilt-in-space, and tailored seat sizing, how do you choose the right option?
There are two other key features you should look for when choosing a care chair for someone who is hoisted.
Before choosing a care chair for someone who is hoisted, it is important to think about which controls are best for them. On most care chairs these movements can usually be controlled either manually (by a carer) or electronically (using a handset).
Many people will still be able to operate a handset to use the chair themselves. In these cases, electric action is likely the best option. It gives someone much more independence.
However, you also need to consider an individual’s cognitive skills. Someone may be physically able to operate the handset, but they may have cognitive impairments that mean electric action is unsafe.
This is unfortunately a common problem for people with late-stage dementia or Alzheimer’s, in these cases…manual action may be the safest option.
There is an inextricable relationship between correct Seat Size, Posture and Pressure Care and it is essential for hoisted individuals to get the postural support and pressure relief that their condition requires.
As a result, those looking for a care chair must pick from two options.
A custom care chair might initially a great fit, however certain conditions can cause fluctuations in a person’s size and weight…and a highly expensive custom care chair may no longer fit properly.
But an adjustable chair provides flexibility over a long period of time and for this reason, we recommend choosing a care chair with adjustable sizing.
We designed all aspects of the Lento Care Chair to be quickly adjustable without quickly adjusted without the need for tools!
This cuts down long-term costs – you aren’t going to need to replace the care chair after a few years!
Plus, it protects the user from the risk of pressure sores and other injuries associated with poor seat sizing.
When we created the Lento Care Chair, we wanted it to be the go to medical grade recliner care chair for people who are hoisted and built it to fit 80% of hoisted individuals.
Designed to reduce friction and make caring for elderly, disabled & low mobility users easy, the chair comes with removable armrests for easier lateral patient transfers, fully adjustable seat sizing to find the perfect fit for each individual who uses the chair and options for electric or manual action.
When looking for specialist seating solutions for the care of hoisted patients, it is important to keep several considerations in mind.
After years of supplying seating to healthcare professionals across the UK, we ensured our Lento Care Chair meets these needs.
Created specifically for the care and treatment of elderly, disabled and low mobility patients in healthcare facilities, community care or at home, the Lento specialist seating range is an range of adjustable chairs that are designed to care for complex conditions; whether personalised to a single users requirements, or for multi user environments.
Our hospital-spec Lento chair is designed with enhanced infection control (contact our team to discuss)
The Little Lento care chair is designed for anyone under 5’ 2” to support an even wider range of people!