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Best Manual Patient Lifts

14 minute read| Updated for September, 2020
How We Found the Best Manual Patient Lifts
8 Reviewers
21 Products Considered
9 Hours of Research
6 Products Reviewed
3 Top Picks

Best Manual Patient Lifts

Whether for emergency situations or everyday movement, manual patient lifts are high-performing medical devices that assist caregivers and family members of those who need a little extra help getting around.

If you find it difficult to move or are having trouble assisting someone who does, we recommend you take a look at the following products.

When hoisting a patient—whether from the floor or from sitting to standing—keep in mind that the patient’s body weight should be centeredover the base legs at all times.

Patient lifts go by many names: patient hoist, jack hoist, hydraulic lift, etc. However, they all work to accomplish the same goal. A patient lift is a specially designed piece of medical equipment that assists caregivers such as nurses or family members in lifting and transferring patient between a bed and a chair (or elsewhere).

These lifts accomplish this with the use of a sling system. The lifts are either electrical or hydraulically powered. The top of the device features hooks to which a sling attaches. Patients are hoisted up in the slings.

The advantage of manual lifts is that it greatly minimizes the amount of effort it takes to help someone who is partially or fully immobile out of bed or to different locations. Just one person can operate most of these machines. It reduces the number of people required to relocate a patient while also lessening the risk of injury while moving a patient.

If you are new to the idea of using a patient lift, you should do some research to learn the basics before attempting to operate one—especially if you are a family member intending on using it for a loved one.

First, the basics: When hoisting a patient—whether from the floor or from sitting to standing—keep in mind that the patient’s body weight should be centered over the base legs at all times. This keeps the whole mechanism steady. Many lifts have adjustable bases that can help make this easier.

Manufacturers have made manual and electric powered lifts fairly simple to operate. A manual lift uses hydraulic cylinders that are operated by a hand pump. To lift, simply pump the hand pump until you’ve reached your desired position.

To lower a patient down manually, open the hydraulic pressure release knob. Turn it counter-clockwise, but not more than a single full turn. This will release your patient.

Electric powered lifts work the same way, except they include a rechargeable battery pack and push-button hand control. It uses buttons to both lift and lower patients.