Research

A survey of user perspectives on control devices for electrically powered wheelchairs (2014)

Graham Henderson and Mike Dolan, SMART Centre, Edinburgh

Download EPW Control Device Survey - Final Report

An electrically powered wheelchair (EPW) occupant uses a control device to direct the wheelchair to move at the desired speed and direction of travel. Despite the long history of EPWs, there is little information on how alternative control devices (chin joysticks, sip and puff, etc.) perform in comparison to the EPW standard provision (conventional hand joysticks) nor on the actual prevalence of control devices for a representative group of patients.

This study aims to address the current lack of evidence by asking users for their perspectives on their EPW control device. A postal questionnaire will be undertaken by adult users of EPWs. The results of the survey will be analysed to provide reliable evidence for clinicians to prescribe a control device that will, as far as possible, meet the patient’s needs. The results will also inform technology developers working on innovative control devices.

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