Getting the right wheelchair is essential – what we mean by the “right wheelchair” is what they meets your needs and requirements and enables you to be as active and independent as possible. A wheelchair suitable for you can improve your quality of life, but unfortunately not all OT’s and wheelchair services are good and people end up with the wrong wheelchair for them.
Before you speak to an OT, a physio or go along to the wheelchair services appointment speak to wheelchair users, browse the internet and go along to a specialist shop. When we say specialist shop we mean one that specialises in wheelchairs and has wheelchair users who work there – not your run of the mill mobility shop who will often sell you the one with the biggest profit margin.
Then go armed with the info you have gathered – you are well within your right to have an opinion and discuss your needs and explain why you think such a type of wheelchair would be suitable for you. If you have extra available money then the best option is to get the wheelchair voucher and go to a specialist, place the order and pay for extra cost. If not then make sure you put across a good case to wheelchair services and get the right wheelchair for you.
What is a good active user wheelchair? – in general you cannot go far wrong with the Kuschall K-Series, it’s adjustable, lightweight and a great active user wheelchair.
How much should I expect from wheelchair services voucher?
This seems to be a postcode lottery! – but the way it works is it is based on the cost of the wheelchair that would be provided by the NHS. So if you ensure they know you want to be active, they know you want to self push independently and that you want an active user wheelchair they you should get at least £1000 as a voucher. TIP: make it clear you are worried about pressure sores and you need a proper pressure cushion, they should also add the cost of this into the voucher amount.