Different Types of Hoist Units

There are all kinds of different ceiling track hoist units, and they’ve all got different features and functions.

Hoist units are arguably the most important part of the overhead hoist system, so getting the right one is very important. Here’s our guide to different patient hoist units and what they offer.

Fixed patient hoist units

Fixed units are ideal in rooms where you will always need a hoist on the ceiling track to carry out regular transfers. These are permanently attached to the overhead track and cannot be removed without tools.

Fixed units will still have a spreader bar or two tapes attached to lift you or your patient. These are usually installed in places that offer residential care for highly-dependent patients.

An AirRise200 hoist unit permanently fixed to the hoist track
Fixed hoist units are ideal for high-dependency patients who need help with most transfers.

Portable overhead hoist units

Portable units are also used in residential care environments, but for people who are less dependent on equipment to be moved around. Portable units are also great for individual users where they don’t need a separate overhead hoist unit in every room.

These lightweight units can be detached from the track and moved to various other locations around the system wherever they’re needed. This is also a good solution in care environments where the unit can be used in different rooms whenever necessary.

Portable hoist units are also easier to clean or repair if necessary.

An AirLifter portable hoist unit
Portable hoist units tend to be better suited in environments where hoist units can be shared between different rooms.

Manual traverse movement

This is just a fancy way of saying hoists that you move yourself. The carer can simply move the person in the sling along the track by pushing or pulling the unit.

The wheels of the hoist motor trolley are specially designed to provide a smooth, safe movement of the hoist pod itself. This also means that the caregiver has complete control over the speed at which the hoist (and the patient) is moving.

Manual traverse ceiling track hoist units also give you more flexibility when positioning the patient, and the hoist unit self-centralises above the patient when lifting and lowering down. It’s also less expensive than a powered traverse.

Powered traverse hoist units

Although manual movement units are cheaper, powered traverse hoist pods have their own benefits.

Powered units give you the ability to determine all movements of the hoist unit from the handset itself; there’s no need for any pushing or pulling to get the unit to move. Conveniently, most powered hoist units will return to a charging point automatically whenever they’re not in use.

This feature is particularly good for plus-sized people and it powers the movement of the ceiling track hoist unit. It’s also ideal for independent self-hoisting people who can control all the movement through the handset.

Plus size hoist units

Bariatric and plus-sized hoist units are also available. It’s always important to note that bariatric healthcare environments will require different design layouts and more space than a traditional setup (read this article for more information).

The AirRise500 is a bariatric type of ceiling track hoist units and can lift much more weight than a typical unit
The AirRise500 hoist unit can lift up to 500kg 78 stone) in weight and is much better suited to bariatric and plus size people.

Bariatric hoist units are capable of lifting much larger working loads, and some units can lift up to 500kg in weight! If you’re looking at using bariatric hoist units you should also make sure that you’re using the right spreader bar to keep the patient as comfortable as possible.

In conclusion…

These are the main types of hoist units to be aware of and their features. Whether you’re needy a simple, portable, manual traverse unit, or a powered bariatric unit, there are many hoist units on offer.

Just make sure that you know the key requirements whenever you’re shopping for a new hoist unit, and that should lead you in the right direction. But if you’re struggling or need further advice, then get in touch!

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