In our last article we looked at how the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is known to frown upon off-the-shelf manual handling training, and has branded it ‘a waste of time and money’.

Having recently issued advice for employers on how to decide the help required to deal with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) in the workplace, the HSE has stated that simplistic manual handling training is a waste of time and money that just doesn’t make any difference.

As you may expect, we are in agreement with the comments made by the HSE. Tailored, practical manual handling training that incorporates risk assessments and hierarchy of controls is something we have always championed. We also believe that the same should apply to people handling training. An HSE case study proves our point.

The Case in Point

An NHS trust had concerns over a growing number of accidents involving slide sheets being used to move patients. A back-care adviser was called in to review the accidents and submitted a report on working practices.

The findings revealed that staff were not sure about the correct type of slide sheet to use for the particular task. They also considered them a challenge to use. The solution that followed was a custom designed slide sheet that was suitable for all situations, with staff training tailored to the task, the equipment and the environment. The result? MSD-related incidents were reduced by as much as 80 per cent.

This case study goes to show that when people handling methods and training are fully tailored, the difference is considerable.

As with manual handling training, people moving and handling training should include site-specific risk assessments and should be adapted to suit specific needs. Training carried out in the actual workplace environment using the lifting aids that handlers are putting to use on a daily basis is of optimum value.

Tailored People Handling Training

Our people handling training is designed to make sure that handlers are proficient when it comes to undertaking their own risk assessments and in selecting the right movement processes, and that they know how to safely use any equipment provided to control the risk.

Courses are practical and hands-on, covering both unconscious and conscious patient handling and turning. Training is offered by our qualified, highly experienced experts throughout the UK.

For more information on our people handling and moving training courses or to make a booking, call 0800 710 1099 or email