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Lifting Safely at Work

Stella is a nursing assistant at Mountain View Assisted Living Facility. Every day, she needs to lift the residents, but she must also lift boxes and equipment. So that she doesn’t injure her back, Stella has to be careful when she lifts things. For example, this morning, Stella’s manager Eve asked her to carry a box from the front desk to the storeroom.

Stella stands next to the box, lifting just a corner of it to check its weight. She can tell it will be a little heavy. Standing with her feet spread twelve inches apart for support, she bends her knees, grabs the box by opposite corners on the bottom, and lifts the box, using her leg muscles to stand up. When she is sure she is holding the box securely, she turns to the side and carries it to the storeroom. If the box were much heavier, she would have used a cart or asked a coworker to help her carry the box.

Next, Stella goes to check on Mrs. Winslow in Room 128. Mrs. Winslow is awake in bed, and Stella is going to help her get into a wheelchair because Mrs. Winslow wants to go down to the TV room to watch her favorite show.

Stella moves the wheelchair next to the bed and puts the brakes on the wheelchair. She holds Mrs. Winslow underneath her arms and slowly moves her to the edge of the bed. After Stella balances herself with her feet spread apart, she lifts Mrs. Winslow gently and moves her into the wheelchair. When Mrs. Winslow is comfortable, Stella wheels her down to the TV room. Stella is used to lifting residents from their beds to their wheelchairs. It is just one of the important tasks she does every day.

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© 2015 by Southwest Adult Basic Education

Project made financially possible through grants from:

Southwest Initiative Foundation, Marshall Community Foundation, Southwest Regional Transition Partners, Southwest Adult Basic Education, Marshall Healthcare Partners