Depending on a person’s ability to move, transferring from a bed to a wheelchair can be a fairly easy or complicated procedure. Even if someone has a self-propelled wheelchair, or they are capable of moving on their own to a limited extent, it is always advised to ask for help.
Lightweight wheelchairs are generally easier to manoeuvre, since they are created with a lighter frame to facilitate movement. Lightweight wheelchairs are produced by many manufacturers, including Karma Mobility, and allow users to move easily around their house or outdoors, even on different types of terrains. Last but not least, some lightweight wheelchairs come with a self-propelling mechanism, which is ideal for people who want to achieve a greater degree of autonomy.
How to move safely from the bed to the wheelchair
Patients who are moving out of their bed into a wheelchair on a daily basis, or from a car to a wheelchair (or any type of transfer), should look into buying a lightweight wheelchair. Lightweight wheelchairs are easy to move and can be folded to occupy less space. Another important parameter to look for in a wheelchair is whether it comes with removable armrests, as this can help a patient to easily transfer in most situations.
Unless someone can move on their own without risking any injury, a caretaker should gently help the person to move from their bed into the wheelchair. Positioning the wheelchair in such a way that it directly faces the person on the bed is very helpful, as this will allow the transfer to be more effective once the person is lifted from the bed into the wheelchair. Always ensure that the brakes are engaged before helping a person sit in the wheelchair.
Once the person sits on the wheelchair, ensure that they are comfortable by adjusting any parts of the wheelchair, if needed. Remember to always lift using your back as it can offer more support than your knees when moving a person from the bed to the wheelchair. Last but not least, make sure to carry the body at a higher level than that of the wheelchair in order to avoid dropping them or hurting them accidentally.