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Exploring the impact of wheelchair design on user function in a rural South African setting

dc.contributor.authorVisagie, Suronaen_ZA
dc.contributor.authorDuffield, Svenjeen_ZA
dc.contributor.authorUnger, Mariaanen_ZA
dc.date.accessioned2016-05-10T13:38:43Z
dc.date.available2016-05-10T13:38:43Z
dc.date.issued2015
dc.identifier.citationVisagie, S., Duffield, S. & Unger, M. 2015. Exploring the impact of wheelchair design on user function in a rural South African setting. African Journal of Disability, 4(1): 1-8, doi: 10.4102/ajod.v4i1.171en_ZA
dc.identifier.issn2226-7220 (online)
dc.identifier.issn2223-9170 (print)
dc.identifier.otherdoi: 10.4102/ajod.v4i1.171
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/98991
dc.descriptionCITATION: Visagie, S., Duffield, S. & Unger, M. 2015. Exploring the impact of wheelchair design on user function in a rural South African setting. African Journal of Disability, 4(1): 1-8, doi: 10.4102/ajod.v4i1.171.en_ZA
dc.descriptionPublication of this article was funded by the Stellenbosch University Open Access Fund.en_ZA
dc.descriptionThe original publication is available at http://www.ajod.orgen_ZA
dc.description.abstractBackground: Wheelchairs provide mobility that can enhance function and community integration. Function in a wheelchair is influenced by wheelchair design. Objectives: To explore the impact of wheelchair design on user function and the variables that guided wheelchair prescription in the study setting. Method: A mixed-method, descriptive design using convenience sampling was implemented. Quantitative data were collected from 30 wheelchair users using the functioning every day with a Wheelchair Scale and a Wheelchair Specification Checklist. Qualitative data were collected from ten therapists who prescribed wheelchairs to these users, through interviews. The Kruskal-Wallis test was used to identify relationships, and content analysis was undertaken to identify emerging themes in qualitative data. Results: Wheelchairs with urban designs were issued to 25 (83%) participants. Wheelchair size, fit, support and functional features created challenges concerning transport, operating the wheelchair, performing personal tasks, and indoor and outdoor mobility. Users using wheelchairs designed for use in semi-rural environments achieved significantly better scores regarding the appropriateness of the prescribed wheelchair than those using wheelchairs designed for urban use (p = <0.01). Therapists prescribed the basic, four-wheel folding frame design most often because of a lack of funding, lack of assessment, lack of skills and user choice. Conclusion: Issuing urban type wheelchairs to users living in rural settings might have a negative effect on users’ functional outcomes. Comprehensive assessments, further training and research, on long term cost and quality of life implications, regarding provision of a suitable wheelchair versus a cheaper less suitable option is recommended.en_ZA
dc.description.urihttp://www.ajod.org/index.php/ajod/article/view/171
dc.format.extent8 pages
dc.language.isoen_ZAen_ZA
dc.publisherAOSIS Publishingen_ZA
dc.subjectWheelchairs -- South Africa -- Design and constructionen_ZA
dc.titleExploring the impact of wheelchair design on user function in a rural South African settingen_ZA
dc.typeArticleen_ZA
dc.description.versionPublisher's versionen_ZA
dc.rights.holderAuthors retain copyrighten_ZA


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