Novel Mechanical System Turns Bedridden Hospital Patients
It takes five or six people to turn an intubated patient in a hospital bed. For patients in an artificial coma, this procedure is performed at least twice a day in order to improve patients’ breathing and prevent bedsores. A mechanical system developed at EPFL’s Instant-Lab halves the number of hospital staff needed to turn patients and makes the task less physically demanding. With the Instant-Lab system, the top and bottom sheets around the patient are bound together in four places using a kind of metal clamp. The metal clamps contain holes for attaching cables; cables are introduced into the holes on one side of the patient’s body and attached to a patient lift – the machine typically used in hospitals to transfer patients.