Navigating the New Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Interprofessional National Standards

Suzy Harrington, DNP, RN, MCHES and Colin Brigham, CIH, CSP, CPE, CPEA, CSPHP



Repeated transfer, repositioning, and ambulation of patients and the lack of access to assistive technologies often cause healthcare workers to overexert themselves and become injured. According to the ANA 2011 Health and Safety Survey, 62% of nurses indicated that suffering from a disabling musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) was one of their top 3 safety concerns. In 2011, RNs ranked 5th among all occupations for the number of MSD cases, resulting in days away from work.
In June 2013, new Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Interprofessional National Standards were released, based on the work of stakeholders from across the care continuum. This activity presents the new standards and provides nurses with information on implementing the standards in their work environment.

Purpose/Goal: The purpose of this activity is to enable nurses to safely move and handle patients to prevent injuries using the interprofessional standards.


At the conclusion, participants will be able to:
1. Review the eight interprofessional Safe Patient Handling and Mobility (SPHM) standards.
2. Appraise how to prevent injuries among healthcare providers and patients.
3. Integrate the new SPHM standards of care into practice and improve the quality and safety of care.


Suzy Harrington, DNP, RN, MCHES is the Director the American Nurses Association’s (ANA) Department for Health Safety, and Wellness. The department actively promotes the health, safety, and wellness of the individual nurse and the nursing profession, empowering nurses to be more effective role models, advocates, and educators for themselves and for their families, communities, work environment, and their patients. Dr. Harrington and her department guided the development process of the Safe Patient Handling and Mobility Interprofessional Standards to be applicable across the continuum of care.

Colin J. Brigham, CIH, CSP, CPE, CPEA, CSPHP is a certified safe patient handling professional with over 39 years of experience in the safety and health field. As Vice President, Safety Management and Ergonomics with 1Source Safety and Health, Inc., he helps to manage the provision of safety and health services to client companies in the healthcare and many other sectors. He has served as Chair on the Ergonomics Committee of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and taught Ergonomics at Temple University. He has led healthcare systems to develop, implement and sustain safe patient handling programs since 1989. Mr. Brigham has developed and presented safe patient handling seminars and written numerous articles. He is currently Past President and on the Board of the Association of Safe Patient Handling Professionals.

Disclosure: The other authors and planners of this continuing nursing education activity have disclosed no relevant financial relationships with any commercial companies pertaining to this activity.

Contact Hours: 1

Expiration Date: 6/15/2016

Pharmacology Hours: 0


Member Price: $15.00
Non-Member Price: $30.00

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