- Our Team
Equipment Prescription by Occupational Therapists
At Vista Healthcare, our skilled clinicians can support people to find clinically appropriate mobility equipment to suit their individual needs.
Mobility Equipment refers to a range of devices that are used to enhance a person’s safety and independence when in motion. Equipment is often used in conjunction with ongoing rehabilitation and is helpful for people living with weakness, joint pain, muscle pain and balance issues.
These issues are often associated with a decline in confidence and safety when walking, so mobility equipment can be used to support the movement, build confidence, and reduce fall risk.
Most importantly, receiving the right equipment is very empowering and can help people control their lives more, which helps raise the quality of life.
Types of Mobility Equipment we Prescribe
There are many different types of Mobility Equipment available to support safe and independent movement. These include:
- Walkers (such as A-Frame or 4 wheeled walkers)
- Motorised scooters
- Wheelchairs (both motorised and manual)
- Chair lifts
- Bathroom seats, commodes, safety equipment
- Specalised cutlery
- Safe kitchen appliances
The Occupational Therapists at Vista Healthcare regularly attend disability expos and maintain awareness of the new beneficial equipment available, which is part of offering holistic care to our community.
How do people get Mobility Equipment?
When mobility equipment is recommended, we provide a thorough report with a quotation. Consideration is given to types of equipment, associated costs, and any existing NDIS funding.
It is important to have expert advice around mobility equipment recommendations because someone’s requirements can change across time. For example, a person with cerebral palsy may use a walker in the short term, but also seek out a wheelchair to improve their independence long term.
We develop appropriate review periods and functional rehabilitation programs to support that person’s adjustment to new equipment.
Assistive Technology for NDIS Participants
Vista Healthcare supports many NDIS Participants. Our clinicians are experienced at these NDIS processes, and can support with:
- Carrying out all required assessments
- Drawing up comprehensive reports
- Submitting requests for funding approval
- Liaising with NDIS case managers as needed
- Working with NDIS support coordinators
Our team can manage equipment trials with disability equipment suppliers too. These can take place in the client’s home or at the supplier’s premises, and normally take between 1 to 1½ hours.
Longer trial periods can sometimes be arranged on a case by case basis and depending on the number of equipment been trialled.
The selection process can often involve preliminary recommendations for the client to look at online. From there, a shortlist of preferred options can be established. Of course, patients can also visit suppliers independently and then discuss suitability with their Occupational Therapist.
For NDIS-managed plans, disability equipment suppliers are required to be NDIS-registered; for self and plan managed NDIS plans, these participants may purchase from almost any disability equipment supplier.
Success Story 1: Creating Independence
We recently helped a lovely client who reached out to us because she wanted to improve her mobility. This was a very significant case for us because with straightforward interventions we were able to achieve some very significant improvements to her quality of life.
When she came to us, she was dealing with multiple diagnoses including Parkinson’s Disease, depression, and anxiety. Unfortunately, she also recently had to undergo a below-knee amputation.
She had developed an allergy to the materials of her prosthesis, and the only scooter she had was extremely heavy and could not be loaded into a vehicle. This meant that she wasn’t able to participate in family outings or access the community very easily.
We knew this was a problem we could overcome, so our team at Vista Healthcare worked with her to identify suitable mobility Equipment. This included a lightweight scooter, as well as a light wheelchair that could be folded.
The outcomes of this were fantastic – the wheelchair meant that she was immediately able to attend family events. It also gave her more independence around the home, too. The lightweight scooter gave her the freedom to access the community easily and safely as much as she wanted.
It has been very rewarding to see the wonderful impact this has had on her everyday life.
Success Story 2: A Rollercoaster Ride to Success!
Vista Healthcare also recently helped a young man who lives with Cerebral Palsy. He is in his thirties and was starting to notice a slight decline in his physical capabilities.
He is very independent, and maintaining that independence was obviously very important to him. One of his biggest joys is being able to go on day-trip outings, particularly to Luna Park, Sydney. The wheelchair he was using when we started working with him was no longer appropriate – it was too heavy and difficult for his family to push, which in turns, restricts community access.
Our team at Vista Healthcare researched a new option for him, taking into account that he needed a lightweight, portable, motorised wheelchair that could fit easily into the boot of his family car. We found an excellent option for him and arranged for him to undertake a trial.
Now that he has the right mobility equipment to suit his needs, he is enjoying much more freedom and independence. He and his family can safely and easily access not just Luna Park but other great places. They told us their next adventure is to Taronga Zoo.
It has been wonderful to see the change this simple intervention has made for him. We are waiting for him to ask us to ride the rides at Luna Park with him – we’d join in a heartbeat!