OBJECTIVE. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of a safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM) program on patient self-care outcomes.

METHOD. We used a retrospective cohort design. Data were obtained from the electronic medical records of 1,292 patients receiving inpatient rehabilitation services. Self-care scores from the FIM™ for patients who participated in rehabilitation before implementation of an SPHM program were compared with the scores of patients who participated after implementation of the program.

RESULTS. Patients who received inpatient rehabilitation services with an SPHM program were as likely to achieve at least modified independence in self-care as those who received inpatient rehabilitation services without an SPHM program.

CONCLUSION. SPHM programs may not affect self-care performance in adults receiving inpatient rehabilitation services. However, more work must be done to define specific and effective methods for integrating patient handling technologies into occupational therapy practice.

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