Link to the University of Pittsburgh Homepage
Link to the University Library System Homepage Link to the Contact Us Form

Ergonomic Assessment of a Robotic Assisted Transfer Device for Conducting Caregiver Assisted Wheelchair Transfers

Greenhalgh, Mark (2020) Ergonomic Assessment of a Robotic Assisted Transfer Device for Conducting Caregiver Assisted Wheelchair Transfers. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

This is the latest version of this item.

Download (3MB) | Preview


Depending on the nature of an injury or illness, a care recipient benefits from caregiver assistance when moving to and from a target surface, a maneuver known as an assisted transfer. When performed manually, that is physically with no assistance, a transfer exposes the caregiver to muscle fatigue in the back, shoulders, and upper extremities, endangering themselves as well as their care recipient. Because of the relief they provide caregivers, transfer lift systems are becoming a common clinical standard to counter exposure to such risk factors. Use of such devices improves the safety of performing transfers as well as their efficiency. As the population continues to age and society becomes more inclusive of disability, it is imperative to advance such technologies as to improve their usability in and out of a clinical workspace. Robotics present a unique opportunity for caregivers to perform a safe and effective transfer while reducing the risk for musculoskeletal injury and progressing independent living for a mobility device user. The purpose of this project was to assess caregivers performing transfers using a portable, ambidextrous robotic assisted transfer device (RATD). This was performed over the course of two studies: (1) a “proof of concept” assessment in which the trunk kinematics and usability feedback from caregivers (N=21) were compared between a prototype of the novel RATD and a Mechanical Floor Lift (the clinical standard of care), and (2) an ergonomic assessment in which caregivers (N=28) conducted transfers on their paired care recipient (N=28) using a second generation RATD, from which trunk kinematics, usability feedback, cognitive load, and muscle activation was compared to the Mechanical Floor Lift. The outcomes of both studies provided insight and promise into the application of a novel engineering concept to advance performance of a critical activity of daily living (ADL) for people living with a mobility impairment as well as to improve quality of care delivery provided by their caregivers.


Social Networking:
Share |


Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Greenhalgh, Markwmg3@pitt.eduwmg3
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairCooper,
Committee MemberKoontz,
Committee MemberBendixen,
Committee MemberSt. Laurent,
Committee MemberCooper,
Date: 8 September 2020
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 13 March 2020
Approval Date: 8 September 2020
Submission Date: 25 March 2020
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 126
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences > Rehabilitation Science and Technology
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Caregivers, Assisted Transfers, Robotics, Assistive Technology
Date Deposited: 08 Sep 2020 14:25
Last Modified: 08 Sep 2020 14:25

Available Versions of this Item

  • Ergonomic Assessment of a Robotic Assisted Transfer Device for Conducting Caregiver Assisted Wheelchair Transfers. (deposited 08 Sep 2020 14:25) [Currently Displayed]


Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item