Safe Patient Handling (SPH) Program and Handle All Transfers Safely (HATS)
The Stanford Health Care (SHC) Safe Patient Handling (SPH) program,
Handle All Transfers Safely (HATS) began in 2009 as part of the
organization's continuous efforts to provide a safe and healthy work
environment for all staff.
Safe Patient Handling leadership researched best practices and
evidence surrounding the prevention of career-ending and life-changing
injuries that nurses and other direct providers are at risk of
developing in the process of lifting and moving patients. They found
that a growing body of evidence indicated that commonly used patient
transfer strategies such as lift teams, back belts and body mechanics
classes are ineffective in reducing back injuries.
With this knowledge, SHC mandated that institution-wide
"no-lift" policies be implemented. The Safe Patient Handling
program introduced mechanical lifting equipment to support employees
and patients. The SPH program trained 100% of the staff and deployed
equipment to more than 20 inpatient units, operating rooms, and
procedural areas by the end of 2009.
Ongoing support in the form of Transfer Specialists and Unit
Champions help to sustain the movement and create the culture change
needed to decrease employee injuries and improve the safety of patient transfers.
The name HATS (Handle All Transfers Safely) was part of a contest
open to all employees to name the Safe Patient Handling program and be
awarded for their creativity and program support.
In January 2012, the passage of California's AB 1136 mandated that
hospitals facilitate SPH policies and practices. This bill has
supported the work of the SPH program and emphasizes the importance of
safe patient handling techniques for employee and patient
Unit Champions, content below are critical in successfully
integrating and sustaining a SPH culture at Stanford Health Care. For
information on becoming a SPH Champion or to learn more about the SPH
Program, please email email@example.com.
SPH unit champions
Safe Patient Handling (SPH) practices are sustained by a SPH
Committee comprised of Unit Champions and staff members from every
patient care area. Unit Champions attend Quarterly Champion Meetings
where they receive special training and help formulate solutions to
promote a SPH culture at Stanford Health Care. Unit Champions have
also been recruited from the Transport Department to reach out to all
staff members that are involved in patient movement.
Throughout the year, education focused upon SPH innovative best
practices and strategies are provided to staff. Opportunities for
certification are offered by The Association for Safe Patient Handling
Professionals (ASPHP). To learn more about certification, please visit
National Conferences – East and West Coast Safe Patient
Full-day regional conference with SPH experts
offered by The Association of Safe Patient Handling Professionals
On-site webinars offered by (ASPHP)
Safe Patient Handling, Mobility and Skin Care Seminars
The SPH program is led by a leadership group with members spanning
various departments throughout the hospital. Bi-weekly meetings are
held to discuss current initiatives and problem-solve any areas of
opportunity that arise.
For information on becoming a SPH Champion or to learn more about
the SPH Program, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.