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Wheel Chair Recommendations? - Carers UK Forum

Wheel Chair Recommendations?

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
Hi everybody. I'm new to the forum and I am currently looking into training and employment opportunities in the care industry in the UK, (I live in Ireland). I'm currently unemployed but have been speaking to a number of care providers in the UK with opportunities available so I am excited that a new chapter in my life may be about to open. I'll let you know how I get on.

On a different subject altogether, I was hoping to get some advice on a suitable wheelchair for my grandmother. I have been doing my research online and see that the range of chairs available is quite vast. From what I can see, we can get anything from a fully automatic electric model to a power assisted or simple, straight-forward manual chair. I also appreciate that some chairs are designed and built with outdoor use in mind while others are more suited to indoor use. We were hoping to compromise find something that would be suitable in both environments? (Or are we asking a bit much there?) It will be my grandfather who will be assisting my grandmother on a daily basis and dealing with the wheel chair for her, i.e. unfolding, pushing it for her, carrying it on the bus for her etc. I have been doing some initial research by comparing wheel chairs for sale on the classified ads and auction websites, but was hoping somebody on here may be able to make a recommendation from first hand experience. Any pointers would be hugely appreciated. Thanks in advance.
Not sure if it's what you're looking for, but I purchased for my mother the Ergo Lite Transit Wheelchair made by Karma Mobility.

It was one of the lightest (but non-flimsy) that I could find at the time - I have problems with my shoulders and needed to be able to lift it up into my boot. With the back folded back in half, it will actually stand upright in the boot area of my Skoda Fabia (with the parcel shelf removed).

It's fine for occasional outings (not sure about more lengthy use) on relatively smooth surfaces (not very good on grass, gravel, uneven paving etc.).

Hope this helps!
I'm feeling a bit sorry for granddad having to push her, help her on and off the bus etc. Assuming she is over 65, check to make sure that they have claimed Attendance Allowance for her, which in turn may entitle them to additional benefits. Also suggest to them that they ask Social Services for a Needs Assessment for her, and a Carers Assessment for him, and an Occupational Therapy Assessment. This will look at whether the home could benefit from any extra aids and adaptations, for example to make it easier to get in and out of the bath. Between them, these will make sure things are as easy as possible for both of them.
One way to sort out a suitable wheelchair without going to the expense of actually buying one (everyone's needs are different and a chair that suits one person may not be suitable for another !) is to visit your nearest Mobility shop and try out the ones in the shop - then shop around for a similar chair. (In general I found the chairs with large wheels easier to push and manoeuvre).

There is also a scheme in most towns called "Shopmobility" - they hire out wheelchairs by the hour or the day for a nominal fee (usually only a couple of pounds); if there is one near Mum & Dad then they could call in and again try out a few. http://www.shopmobility.org.uk/

Before Mum had her own chair we used them regularly when shopping in our town centre :)

The Red Cross also do a wheelchair long term loan scheme, but you don't always have the choice of which type of chair you get.

If Dad is 'getting on in years' it might be worthwhile considering a chair with a power pack to take the effort out of pushing it ! Although the power packs need regularly charging and are usually quite heavy to take off and replace :(

With reference to getting on and off buses - these days most buses have a wheelchair ramp so that the user doesn't have to get 'on and off' the bus under their own steam - they just stay in the chair :) You just need to let the driver know when the bus pulls up.
Pennie wrote:Not sure if it's what you're looking for, but I purchased for my mother the Ergo Lite Transit Wheelchair made by Karma Mobility.

It was one of the lightest (but non-flimsy) that I could find at the time - I have problems with my shoulders and needed to be able to lift it up into my boot. With the back folded back in half, it will actually stand upright in the boot area of my Skoda Fabia (with the parcel shelf removed).

It's fine for occasional outings (not sure about more lengthy use) on relatively smooth surfaces (not very good on grass, gravel, uneven paving etc.).

Hope this helps!
bowlingbun wrote:I'm feeling a bit sorry for granddad having to push her, help her on and off the bus etc. Assuming she is over 65, check to make sure that they have claimed Attendance Allowance for her, which in turn may entitle them to additional benefits. Also suggest to them that they ask Social Services for a Needs Assessment for her, and a Carers Assessment for him, and an Occupational Therapy Assessment. This will look at whether the home could benefit from any extra aids and adaptations, for example to make it easier to get in and out of the bath. Between them, these will make sure things are as easy as possible for both of them.
susieq wrote:One way to sort out a suitable wheelchair without going to the expense of actually buying one (everyone's needs are different and a chair that suits one person may not be suitable for another !) is to visit your nearest Mobility shop and try out the ones in the shop - then shop around for a similar chair. (In general I found the chairs with large wheels easier to push and manoeuvre).

There is also a scheme in most towns called "Shopmobility" - they hire out wheelchairs by the hour or the day for a nominal fee (usually only a couple of pounds); if there is one near Mum & Dad then they could call in and again try out a few. http://www.shopmobility.org.uk/

Before Mum had her own chair we used them regularly when shopping in our town centre :)

The Red Cross also do a wheelchair long term loan scheme, but you don't always have the choice of which type of chair you get.

If Dad is 'getting on in years' it might be worthwhile considering a chair with a power pack to take the effort out of pushing it ! Although the power packs need regularly charging and are usually quite heavy to take off and replace :(

With reference to getting on and off buses - these days most buses have a wheelchair ramp so that the user doesn't have to get 'on and off' the bus under their own steam - they just stay in the chair :) You just need to let the driver know when the bus pulls up.
thanks for all the helpful advice folks. Plenty to think about and consider here. Cheers.