Making Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Training Effective. Part 2. Assessing Competent Practice



Many healthcare facilities make the mistake of thinking that once clinical staff have received training on safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM) equipment they are safe to use it with a patient. This perception has led to a constant trickle of reported user errors from around the world, with serious, sometimes fatal injuries resulting from the incorrect use of equipment or slings. In the last issue of the International Journal of SPHM, part 1 of this 2-part series examined the what, where, and when of SPHM training and education. This article attempts to answer the question of how we determine if someone is actually safe to use the technologies they have been trained on and that they can apply what they have learned in a safe way to address the moving, transferring, lifting, and mobilizing needs of their patients. The article looks at what is meant by competence, different models of competency, how competence can be verified, and, as significantly, how competence can be maintained.

Monaghan HM

Keywords: safe patient handling & mobility, education, competency, assessment, safety

One time download – from March 2020 Issue