I have been diagnosed now for 11years and i now need some wheels to get about. Can any body give me some advice on a good wheelchair. I’m after a manual one (Brands, types, any advice/hints/tips all greatfully recieved)Thanks
Didn’t you see this programme on TV last night, http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01hrb10/My_Perfect_Wheelchair/
Looks impressive; see via your O/T if they will fund.
Best thing to do is to get a referral to your local Wheelchair Services. They will assess you and offer you (what they think is) a suitable chair. If for some reason it doesn’t suit, you can choose to take a voucher instead - these can be used with approved suppliers to get a discount off your own chair and you pay the difference.
Whatever you decide, get a specialist to fit your chair. Having a poorly fitting chair is not a good thing!
Fwiw, if you plan on doing all your own wheeling, I recommend a lightweight, low backed, rigid body chair without handles or arm rests (they get in the way if you are self propelling), e.g. RGK, Quickie, DaVinci and others. Most (all?) WCS won’t provide these though - no idea why not, but I took a voucher and got a Quickie Helium with extendable handles (so I can get pushed when I want to be). The amount on the vouchers varies massively between WCS, so be prepared to have to fork out a lot of money yourself (or to apply for extra funding from elsewhere, e.g. the MSS). Good chairs are expensive
Don’t be a cheapskate on the wheels and tyres btw - good ones are worth the extra money.
If you’re planning on using the chair a lot on pavements and over rougher ground, then have a look at the Freewheel - a larger wheel that attaches to the front of your chair. Mine gets used a lot.
First step is to get a referral though. This takes a while so it wouldn’t hurt to visit a few mobility shops and try things out in the meantime.
George, thanks for the iplayer programme link - My Perfect Wheelchair. I have taken a look at it, found it very thought provoking on a number of levels. Re: the O/T funding idea, would be suprised if the NHS funding would cover the cost of this chair once its in production. Showed interest on the Carbon Black Facebook Page tho.
Thanks for the response.
Hi Karen, thanks for the information, very helpful. I have now spoken to my O/T for a referral and am off to a mobility shop tomorrow to try some chairs out to use, whist i wait for a voucher. I have checked out a few chairs (Quickie and Top End) so far on the net, will continue to look at the others you suggested.