Question:My father fell and broke his hip two days ago. The hospital staff says he can go home as soon as he can "transfer" by himself. What does this mean?
Basic transfers include moving from a lying down position to sitting up, and from sitting to standing. These movements are necessary for using the toilet. "Independent transfers" mean the person can do these movements without help of any kind. "Assisted transfers" mean the person can get up with the help of a device or person.
Assistance varies from having someone standing nearby to having one person on each side lifting and holding. Assistance may be in the form of a walker, or a vertical pole attached to the side of the bed.
After hip fracture, patients who can transfer and walk without any assistance are the most successful taking care of themselves at home. Patients who cannot transfer or walk without help may require family assistance or a short stay in a rehab center.
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