A gait belt is an assistance safety device that can be used to help a patient sit, stand or walk around, as well as to transfer them from a bed to a wheelchair and vice versa. Nurses will secure the gait belt around the patient’s waist, then grab the belt to steady the patient as they move around together. When used properly, a gait belt reduces the chance that a patient might accidentally fall. The belt also takes some of the physical stress off the caregiver and reduces the chance a nurse could injure his or her back.
Gait belts are usually a few inches wide and made from canvas, nylon or leather with a buckle at the end and sometimes loops for holding. There are two main types of gait belt: a standard design with a metal buckle featuring loops and teeth and a quick release design featuring a plastic buckle that snaps in place.
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