Speaking to audiences is my way of pulling together theories, philosophies, and ideologies that are written on paper and connecting them to the reality of actual patient-care events experienced by those with clinical backgrounds.

Presenting has been one of the pleasures of being in this line of work, bringing to light clinical workplace realities, while emphasizing injury risks that accompanies clinical practice. What I’ve always found interesting when speaking to colleagues is the level of selflessness commonly shared amongst many clinical professionals; for many never consider the hazards of professional practice until after they’ve experienced a work-related injury.

One of the things that I like to call to the attention of my audiences is the inherent physical risks that exists in clinical practice. I make it a point to highlight that as it relates to the physical aspects of lifting and moving patients, there is no manual lifting technique that can consistently prevent us from injuring ourselves when lifting human weight. Many would argue that applying proper body mechanic techniques is an adequate injury prevention mechanism. However, those arguments are often constructed without ever considering that proper body mechanics were created for the purposes of lifting fixed objects such as boxes and other forms of cargo and freight. When I illustrate what keeping your back straight while using your legs to lift would actually look like if applied according to “proper” body mechanics, audiences often laugh for the movements are contrary to the way humans actually interact with one another. We rarely consider the actual reason why we insist on applying this style of lifting to patient care; unfortunately, the answer has everything to do with there being no manual lifting technique that can prevent caregivers from injuring themselves. The nursing profession has settled for substandard techniques which are reflected as the occupation with the highest work-related injury totals as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

After taking audiences “down the road” of reality and reconsideration, I then explain the optimism that has been discovered through technology and innovation. The solution to protecting clinical professionals from debilitating musculoskeletal injuries acquired from lifting and moving patients. In teaching audiences the concepts found in Safe Patient Handling programs and how injuries can be prevented through the use of patient-lift technology, the reactions are usually mixed with both optimism and pessimism. Because there are varying opinions and philosophies related to how we move forward in providing patient care while minimizing the risks associated with manual labor, it brings to the forefront the importance of having a skilled Safe Patient Handling professional with the ability to address related concerns by providing suitable solutions to traditional nursing practice methods.

I effectively leverage my professional nursing experience to suggest that through applying the appropriate strategies involving patient lifts in clinical settings, it remains possible to provide consummate patient-care without sustaining life-altering injuries in the process.

Are you ready to learn more about how to protect your staff from patient handling injuries? Contact Roric to book him to speak at your next informational gathering.