More time to care for St John of God Halswell

St John of God Halswell ceiling hoist implementation programme a resounding success with carers, residents, managers and funders.


Active Healthcare is proud to partner with St John of God Halswell in our latest Guldmann ceiling hoist installation project.

St John of God Halswell is a 60-room specialist service in Christchurch, providing residential and respite support to people aged 16 to 65 living with physical or neurological impairments.

St John of God Halswell ran a pilot programme to trial the replacement of floor hoists with Guldmann ceiling hoists. The trial was incredibly successful and paired with external research, showed strong evidence for ceiling hoist advantages over floor hoists in key areas of lowering staff injury, improving resident care standards and saving staff time.

In fact, the overwhelming result from the pilot was that both staff and residents prefer ceiling hoists.

Mark Anderson, Manager, Facilities Support, St John of God Halswell


Lowering staff injury

Manual handling injuries represent one of the major risks to care workers. A survey of responses from staff at St John of God Halswell during the pilot programme showed staff felt personally safer from injury during resident transfers when using a ceiling hoist compared with floor hoists. There are a number of studies that support this and show reduction in injuries from the use of ceiling hoists.

Mark Anderson, Manager, Facilities Support at St John of God Halswell says his number one focus is on staffing and it’s the biggest cost to the facility. Ceiling hoists bring efficiency and reduce cost of staff by reducing time to deliver care says Mark. “St John of God Halswell is also strongly focussed on creating value for staff and ceiling hoists do that” he says.

Jack Haughton, Physiotherapist and Manager, Rehabilitation and Therapy at St John of God Halswell also supports ceiling hoists. “I think the ceiling hoists are really important for us as we continue to improve our service. They benefit both residents and carers and this is one of the only changes to the workplace I have ever known that has been met with unanimous enthusiasm. We expect them to reduce injuries to staff, improve quality of life for residents and allow us to develop our processes to work more effectively” says Jack.

Improving resident care standards

Mark confirms the residents love the Guldmann ceiling hoists too. “There’s no need for readjustments into a chair which protects skin integrity and the clients love it” he says. This results in a better experience for clients and one that is smoother and makes them feel safer.

Judy Kelly, an Enrolled Nurse at the service says the Guldmann ceiling hoists are “brilliant, they make life so much easier”. Judy says with floor hoists you strain your back, the twisting motion and turning a floor hoist is hard work and ceiling hoists remove that strain.

“The first time I used the ceiling hoist I thought ‘oh my goodness’. The movement is a whole lot more gentle on the staff member. I used to get sore hands, but I don’t anymore with the ceiling hoist. You do notice you don’t feel achy” says Judy.

Judy says she would love ceiling hoists in all rooms because they “make life that little bit easier and my back doesn’t niggle like it used to. They’re jolly brilliant”.

Time and cost saving

When using a floor hoist, generally two carers are needed: one to locate the hoist, make sure its battery is charged, and then both are needed to transfer the resident. With some extra training, a single person can operate the ceiling hoist which is always there in the room, charged and ready to go.

The St John of God Halswell team report that time-saving using a ceiling hoist versus a floor hoist can be up to as much as 5-6 minutes saved per transfer, largely from reducing the ‘time preparing to lift’ phase.

Judy says she does approximately 6 transfers each day. With St John of God Halswell having 22 carers working on any given day, this equates to around 132 lifts per day. Saving 5 minutes on each lift means 11 hours of work time saved each day, or an incredible 4,015 hours saved across the year. Switching from floor to ceiling hoists gives staff, time and cost efficiencies and ultimately more time to care for residents.

As a result of the successful trial, St John of God Halswell are now implementing the replacement of floor hoists with Guldmann ceiling hoists in 44 resident rooms across the facility. Active Healthcare has been working with the team to supply and retrofit the hoists and train care staff in their use.

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To find out how ceiling hoists could work for your facility, contact our team today; call us on 0800 336 339 email sales@activehealthcare.co.nz