Wheelchair Evaluation

Download our Wheelchair Evaluation template to streamlines the documentation process through a evaluation of  clients' mobility and seating needs.

By Olivia Sayson on Jun 03, 2024.

Fact Checked by Nate Lacson.

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What is a Wheelchair Evaluation?

A wheelchair evaluation is a thorough assessment conducted by physical therapists, occupational therapists, or other qualified healthcare professionals to identify the most suitable wheelchair and seating system for an individual's needs.

How is Wheelchair Evaluation conducted?

The evaluation generally consists of the following components:

  1. Interview: Collecting information about the individual's lifestyle, living environment, physical condition, and goals.
  2. Physical assessment: Assessing the person's muscle strength, motor control, muscle tone, range of motion, sensation, skin condition, and sitting balance. This may involve manual muscle testing, evaluating motor planning abilities, and checking for any movement restrictions or deformities.
  3. Seating and positioning: Examining the individual's posture, pressure distribution, and the need for additional postural support. This may include assessing pelvic alignment, hip posture, and determining the need for customized seating components.
  4. Functional abilities: Assessing the individual's capacity to safely and efficiently use the wheelchair, including propulsion, transfers, and completing daily activities.
  5. Equipment trials: Providing the individual with the opportunity to try out different types of wheelchairs and seating components to determine the optimal fit and function.

A wheelchair evaluation aims to prescribe a wheelchair and seating system that optimizes the individual's independence, comfort, and safety, while addressing their unique medical, functional, and environmental needs. The evaluation process is personalized and can vary in complexity depending on the individual's diagnosis, prognosis, and objectives.

Printable Wheelchair Evaluation

Download this Wheelchair Evaluation form to assess mobility needs and ensure proper fitting of mobility aids, enhancing independence and quality of life for patients, and informing appropriate recommendations for healthcare professionals.

What is in a Wheelchair Evaluation?

Our Wheelchair Evaluation template streamlines the documentation process and assists practitioners through a comprehensive evaluation of their clients' mobility and seating needs. Here is a process on how to use our Wheelchair Evaluation template effectively:

Initial assessment

Start by entering the client's basic information, such as name, age, and medical history, and document their current mobility status, including the type of wheelchair they use (if applicable) and their daily activities. Capture the client's goals and expectations from the wheelchair evaluation.

Interview and observation

Use the template to guide your interview with the client, asking about their lifestyle, living environment, and functional challenges. Observe the client's movements, interactions, and activities to gather additional insights into their mobility and seating needs.

Physical and functional assessment

Record details of the physical assessment, including muscle strength, range of motion, posture, and balance. Note the client's ability to perform functional tasks such as transfers and wheelchair propulsion, and document any risk factors such as muscle tone abnormalities, pressure sore risk, or sensory impairments.

Seating and positioning evaluation

Assess the client’s current seating and positioning, noting any areas of discomfort or misalignment. Use the template to guide your assessment of pelvic alignment, posture, and pressure distribution, and evaluate the need for customized seating components and additional support, such as cushions or backrests.

Recommendations and plan

Based on the assessment findings, outline your recommendations for the most appropriate wheelchair and seating system. Provide detailed notes on the specific wheelchair model, seating components, and accessories that best meet the client's needs. Develop an action plan that includes fitting, training, and follow-up appointments to ensure the client's comfort and safety with the new equipment.

Wheelchair Evaluation example

We have developed a Wheelchair Evaluation Example PDF to help you see how this free template functions. This sample demonstrates how to record your findings after evaluating a hypothetical client's mobility and seating needs. You can view the sample here or download it as a PDF for your reference.

Download our free Wheelchair Evaluation template example here

Wheelchair Evaluation example

Benefits of using a Wheelchair Evaluation during physical assessment

Using a wheelchair evaluation for documentation during a physical assessment offers numerous benefits, ensuring that wheelchair users receive the most appropriate and personalized mobility solutions. Here are the advantages of incorporating wheelchair assessments into your practice:

Comprehensive functional mobility assessment

A thorough wheelchair assessment evaluates a client's functional mobility, capturing their abilities and challenges with wheeled mobility devices.

Accurate physical assessment

Detailed documentation of body measurements, muscle tone, and range of motion allows for precise recommendations in selecting the right manual wheelchair and accessories.

Optimized wheelchair seating and neutral sitting posture

Evaluating seating surfaces and clients' posture helps determine the most suitable wheelchair seating solutions that promote neutral position and upright posture.

Identification of risk factors

Wheelchair evaluations allow practitioners to identify potential risk factors such as pressure sores and recommend appropriate interventions.

Enhanced functional independence

By assessing and documenting a client's needs, practitioners can recommend modifications that enhance functional independence and overall quality of life.

Why use Carepatron as your physical therapy software?

Carepatron is the ultimate physical therapy software designed to streamline your practice and enhance patient care. Our user-friendly platform offers comprehensive tools to manage patient records, schedule appointments, and handle billing efficiently. With features such as secure documentation, treatment planning, and progress tracking, Carepatron helps you stay organized and focus on delivering the best possible therapy.

Our software supports seamless communication and collaboration with your patients and colleagues, enabling you to provide personalized care. You can easily access and share therapy clinical notes, goals, and outcomes, ensuring a holistic approach to your patients' rehabilitation.

Carepatron prioritizes data security with encryption and secure storage, giving you peace of mind knowing your patient data is protected. By automating administrative tasks, Carepatron frees up your time, allowing you to focus on what you do best: helping your patients recover and thrive.

Join the thousands of physical therapists who trust Carepatron to revolutionize their practice and improve their workflow. Sign up today to experience the benefits of our innovative physical therapy software!

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What is the purpose of a wheelchair evaluation?
What is the purpose of a wheelchair evaluation?

Commonly asked questions

What is the purpose of a wheelchair evaluation?

A wheelchair evaluation aims to assess an individual's functional mobility and physical needs to recommend the most appropriate wheelchair and seating system for their unique situation.

Who conducts a wheelchair evaluation?

Typically, wheelchair evaluations are conducted by qualified healthcare professionals such as occupational therapists or physical therapists with expertise in wheeled mobility and seating.

How long does a wheelchair evaluation take?

The duration varies depending on the complexity of the individual's needs, but evaluations generally take 1-2 hours. This includes gathering information, performing assessments, and discussing potential options.

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