Haro Park Safety Innovations

July 31, 2015 | News, Member Only

Haro Park Centre is a campus of care located in the West End of Vancouver, offering independent housing, assisted living and residential care to senior citizens. Haro Park has a number of innovative programs and initiatives in place to promote a positive culture of safety.

The Transfer Coach Program

About the Program

The Transfer Coach (TC) Team at Haro Park supports safety in repositioning and transfers to reduce staff injuries and ensure resident safety and security. The main responsibilities of the Transfer Coach Team are to:

  • Assist, support, mentor and act as a resource to staff in the correct use of transfer equipment (lifts/slings)
  • Encourage and support staff in following Haro Park Centre guidelines for safe transfers
  • Educate staff in the correct and safe use of transfer equipment and slings
  • Managing the Sling Program through ongoing audits and checks
  • Assist in ensuring sling safety through ongoing audits and checks
  • Orienting new members to the Transfer Coach Team

People Involved

The Transfer Coach team consists of seven staff and two managers who are supported by the entire leadership team. The self-selected team of staff includes one RN and six care aides.


Prior to implementing the program, the TC’s went through a full day of training which covered the basic responsibilities of the Transfer Coaches as well as extensive training on repositioning and transfers. The Transfer Coach program was developed in tandem with the Sling Program and the TC’s have been instrumental in making that program a success.

The TC Team uses posters and other types of communication to let staff know who the Coaches are, how they can help and what their role is. The TC’s began doing monthly education for staff on each piece of equipment using the Arjo Equipment Check lists as a guide. Some TC’s sit on other committees (MSI, OHS) and their expertise is drawn on through these quality teams.


The TC Team members feel more confident supporting their colleagues in transfer equipment and sling safety as a result of this program. They work closely with physiotherapists, managers, and their teams to model safe care, including providing input into ADL’s and working with specific residents to resolve challenging repositioning situations. TC members also work on other safety committees to provide feedback on the program and move other initiatives forward.

The Sling Program

About the Program

The Sling Program at Haro Park is a process of managing slings within the care home to ensure staff and resident safety during transfers and efficiency of work flow by:

  • Auditing sling integrity and safety
  • Ensuring the correct sling type and size for each resident is in place when needed
  • Engaging the care staff directly in sustaining the process
  • Setting up a referral system to the physiotherapist who assesses residents for correct sling use and notes the correct sling on residents ADL

People Involved

The Transfer Coach Team is responsible for managing the Sling Program. The TC’s are also the ones who educate the rest of the staff on the program and make sure proper sling procedures are being followed.


All slings at Haro Park are audited by the Transfer Coaches for type, integrity and size. New slings are purchased based on the needs found from the audits. As part of the program, all slings were re-categorized with a number, instead of a label with a resident’s name, room or unit. A central room was also set up to house all slings that are not in use.

An electronic database was created for the program, noting all styles, serial numbers, the new sling category number and condition. A Sling Process was then developed to ensure clean slings are always available from the sling room and are housed there until needed.

Audits are done monthly by the TC’s to assess correct sling use for the resident, sling integrity, equipment integrity and to ensure correct slings are available for portable lifts so that residents’ slings are not used. Staff satisfaction surveys are also conducted by the TC’s and the results are presented at Quality Meetings. Changes in the process were made based on this feedback.


The Sling Program has increased the confidence of the TC’s, giving them further experience in mentoring their colleagues through their role as educators. After two months of auditing, the rate of correct sling in resident rooms has increased by 29 per cent.


If you would like to learn more about the Transfer Coach program, the Sling Program or any other health and safety programs in place at Haro Park, send an email to Ilse Patterson, Manager of Assisted Living and Education at Haro Park.

Arjo Equipment Check
Sling Process
Monthly Audits
Staff Satisfaction Survey