How to transfer person from bed to wheelchair

Transferring an individual from a bed to a wheelchair; a caregiver must be present for this type of transfer.

Pull bed sheet down to the foot end of the bed. Suggest to the person who is transferring out of the bed, to face up and scoot to the end of the bed where the caregiver is positioned. Caregiver must place one hand over the knee of the individual, and the other hand under the outer shoulder of the person.

Laying down to sitting up on the bed

Pivot the person that is laying on the bed towards you, at the end of the transition the person should be sitting up at the side of the bed with their feet flat on the floor, facing the caregiver. Instruct the person being transferred from the bed to cross their arms over their chest to provide further stability while transferring out of the bed.

Reassess person’s state of mind

Make sure the individual is in a good state of mind after they are pivoted and seated on the side of the bed, to move on to the next step on how to transfer a person from a bed to a wheelchair.

Positioning the wheelchair and seating position

At this point, you can help the person put on their shoes so that once they are on the wheelchair, they are ready to ride. Caregiver should position wheelchair so that the seat is directly facing the person on the bed, this should allow the transfer to be smoother once the person is lifted from the bed and into the wheelchair. Make sure the brakes are engaged before moving on to the next step in the process.

Seatbelt recommended

Caregivers are instructed to place a seat belt on the person’s waist, to provide support while lifting the patient out of the bed. These types of seat belts are called “Transfer Belts”, they can be purchased through amazon.com or any similar website.

Double check wheelchair position

Now would be a good time to double check the position of the wheelchair before moving on, make sure the wheelchair is facing the patient and is positioned the closest distance possible to the patient and the bed.

Sitting straight and forward on the side of the bed

Instruct the individual to position themselves on the side of the bed so that they are facing straight in the direction they are in, instruct them to push their legs and feet together so that when you are in the action of transferring them, you are in a better position to change direction and movement of the person.

Position yourself in front of the patient, and place your predominant foot on the front side of their shoes, on order to prevent the patient from slipping off the bed while transferring.

One…Two…Three!

The easiest way to prepare the person for the transfer is to count to three (or something similar), in order for the patient and caregiver to be in-synch while transferring from the bed.

Caregiver Position

Caregiver should place their hands below the patient’s arms, where their under arms are usually, position the left hand on the left under arm, and the right hand on the patient’s right under arm. Once you are in position, instruct the patient to place their hands on the top of your shoulders, in order for them to use your body as support while transferring.

Aligned correctly

Once caregiver and the patient are positioned as instructed above, you can let them know that you are going to lift their body and pivot their back towards the seat of the wheelchair.

Transfer Belt and Grip

  • Now you should place your hands on the “transfer belt” that was placed on the patient’s waist, if there is no seat belt available, you can place your hands on the both sides of the person with enough grip to hold them while transferring them.
  • Remember to always lift using your back to generate enough support to lift the weight of the person off the ned and to pivot them into the seat of the wheelchair.
  • Make sure you lift their body to a higher height than the seat of the wheelchair, to allow room for the pivoting action you will be doing during the transfer.
  • The direction of the pivot should line up in the same horizontal line as the armrests of the wheelchair.

And that is how you can properly transfer a person out of their bed and into their Karman Wheelchair!

Karman Healthcare provides unique features on our wheelchairs, this should allow individuals to find the perfect wheelchair for their daily needs and lifestyle.

If you are consistently having to transfer out of a bed and into a wheelchair, or from a vehicle to a wheelchair, or any type of transfer, you should research information to buy a wheelchair that comes standard with flip back armrests, or removable armrests. This should help you and your caregiver to easily transfer in any type of situation.

This article is for an educated way to transfer a person from a bed to a wheelchair, it is for educational purposes only, Karman Healthcare is not responsible for any type of injury that may occur while following these instructions, they are loosely based on CNA state exams nationwide.

Maurice Smith