Unbeknownst to many save for those working in the healthcare industry, all wheelchairs are actually not the same, even though they basically perform the same task. A transport wheelchair (also known as a companion chair or roll-about wheelchair) is a wheelchair that is not only lighter in weight but also easier to use than a standard variant – useful for individuals who do not need to utilize a chair all the time, but who want to take advantage of one occasionally. It is not uncommon for some individuals to use transport wheelchairs to travel to and from their appointments as safely as possible.
What’s important to note about transport wheelchairs is that they aren’t designed for traveling long distances, so if a wheelchair is needed for such ventures, it is wise to ask a healthcare provider about acquiring a standard model. A garden variety transport wheelchair can support an individual who weighs up to approximately 30 pounds, while a heavy-duty transport wheelchair can support an individual who weighs up to 400 or so pounds.
Transport wheelchairs aren’t made to be moved by the person sitting in them; rather, they require the assistance of a caregiver, who would normally push the chair from behind – another important distinction when comparing them to other types of chairs, including those that are motorized.
A transport wheelchair can be purchased at:
• Medical supply stores
• Medical supply websites (such as 1800Wheelchair.com)
• Retail drug outlets (such as Walgreens or CVS)
• Supercenters (such as Wal-Mart or Target)
• Online retailers (such as Amazon)
The unfortunate reality is that patients suffering from a loss of mobility are often stuck inside their homes, rooms or whatever facility they may be living in, and this is mainly because too much activity already exhausts them. As such, they often find most activities that the majority of us would call “simple” to be challenging and complicated because of their medical condition.
Today, one of the most efficient and convenient examples of modern medical equipment is the transport wheelchair, helpful for patients who want to travel or take simple short trips to restaurants, malls or hospitals for appointments. Additionally, they are helpful because they provide more comfort and convenience to patients and their respective caregivers – and, as we alluded to above, these chairs are a safer and more comfortable means of transport.
Since transport wheelchairs are in their wheelhouse, so to speak, when fulfilling patients’ needs of taking short trips, they are significantly smaller, lighter and more compact so they’re easy to lift into and store in vehicles. Thus, transport chairs are not difficult to push, boasting lighter total weight and light rubber materials, while remaining foldable so they don’t require maximum force to move.
Who’s Best Suited to Use Transport Wheelchairs?
We’ve already stressed how transport wheelchairs are equipped with significantly unique designs, and this is important because such chairs accommodate specific types of users. Ideally, transport wheelchairs are geared towards lighter, more petite patients because they’re within the weight capacity ratings; if some heavier-than-average patients use them, the aforementioned safety and comfort are not guaranteed (assuming a caregiver is not assisting).
Luckily, unique wheelchairs are available to work best for each patient’s specific needs and preferences – for example, those patients boasting a bigger and heavier body build can perfectly fit in heavy-duty transport chairs or bariatric transport chairs, both of which feature more robust materials so they can comfortably accommodate larger users.
Breaking Down the Differences Between Transport Wheelchairs and Regular Types
At the end of the day, transport wheelchairs and regular wheelchairs are built to ease patients’ problems of limited mobility. Regular wheelchairs are normally used daily and perform their primary purpose of supporting patients who wish to move about their immediate area, but don’t want any assistance (i.e. to be carried) by their caregivers.
Transport wheelchairs, on the other hand, are ideal to use for traveling – as the namesake would suggest – when patients look forward to moving from place to place. They are often designed to be foldable so they’re easily accessible to fit in planes, buses, cars and even on boats, and with the addition of wheelchair cushions, patients can actually experience more enjoyment while traveling.
Important Things to Keep in Mind When Choosing a Transport Wheelchair
Making the process of finding the seemingly perfect wheelchair even more complicated is the significant advancement of wheelchair availability. Keeping this in mind, it becomes important to shop various options by evaluating reliability factors, with the following three representing the most important from our perspective.
• Weight Capacity – It is necessary, when shopping for a transport wheelchair, to have a straight answer on the weight capacity of the model. If you are the one who will be using it, you need to pay attention to whether your selection can accommodate your body weight. For better use of the wheelchair, you need to choose the best model that will provide you mobility, safety and maximum comfort.
• Seat Size – Along with weight capacity, the seat size is also an important primary factor to consider. You should closely analyze the size of the seat since the best transport wheelchair cushions should be just about perfect; they matter because seats that are too wide can bring with them possible slipping, while seats that are too narrow come along with discomfort.
• Price – Like everything else in life (well, for most of us, anyway), it always comes down to budget and affordability with regard to transport wheelchairs, and as such you need to ensure that the chair you choose doesn’t break the bank. Though they offer special features, a suitable transport wheelchair should be able to perform its primary purpose at a somewhat reasonable price – keep in mind, too, that inexpensive or not, no wheelchair is made for everyone’s specific demands.
Purchasing the wrong kind of transport wheelchair can cost a vast amount of money in the long run, so to make sure that people coping with loss of mobility can find their perfect transport wheelchair model, 1800Wheelchair offers an incredible selection. To give you an idea of that sweeping selection, click here.