Turning Patients Over in Bed

Usually one or two people can turn a patient safely. This can be done with a drawsheet or slide sheet. Or, you can use a ceiling lift (if available), especially if the patient weights over 200 pounds. The patient can sometimes help by pushing down with a heel. Start the turn with the patient on the side of the bed opposite the direction they will be rolling.

Moving patient

Step 1. Cross arms

  • Put the bed rail and head of the bed down; adjust the top of the bed to waist- or hip-level.

  • Cross the patient’s arms on their chest; bend the leg farther away from you.

Moving patient

Step 2. Turn the patient

  • Pull the drawsheet toward you, moving the patient to one side of the bed.

  • Make sure pillows or guardrails are up on other side of the bed.

  • Pull up on sheet with an upward motion. This will cause the patient to roll in the opposite direction.

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