Original Research - Special Collection: Wheelchair-related topics for less-resourced environments

A conceptual framework to assess effectiveness in wheelchair provision

Deepan C. Kamaraj, Nathan Bray, Karen Rispin, Padmaja Kankipati, Jonathan Pearlman, Johan Borg
African Journal of Disability | Vol 6 | a355 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajod.v6i0.355 | © 2017 Deepan C. Kamaraj, Nathan Bray, Karen Rispin, Padmaja Kankipati, Jonathan Pearlman, Johan Borg | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 12 December 2016 | Published: 08 September 2017

About the author(s)

Deepan C. Kamaraj, Human Engineering Research Laboratories, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, United States; Department of Rehabilitation Science & Technology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, United States
Nathan Bray, Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluation, School of Healthcare Sciences, Bangor University, United Kingdom
Karen Rispin, Department of Biology, LeTourneau University, United States
Padmaja Kankipati, Specialized Mobility Operations and Innovation Pvt. Ltd, India
Jonathan Pearlman, Human Engineering Research Laboratories, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, United States; Department of Rehabilitation Science & Technology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, United States
Johan Borg, Social Media and Global Health, Lund University, Sweden


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Abstract

Background: Currently, inadequate wheelchair provision has forced many people with disabilities to be trapped in a cycle of poverty and deprivation, limiting their ability to access education, work and social facilities. This issue is in part because of the lack of collaboration among various stakeholders who need to work together to design, manufacture and deliver such assistive mobility devices. This in turn has led to inadequate evidence about intervention effectiveness, disability prevalence and subsequent costeffectiveness that would help facilitate appropriate provision and support for people with disabilities.
Objectives: In this paper, we describe a novel conceptual framework that can be tested across the globe to study and evaluate the effectiveness of wheelchair provision.
Method: The Comparative Effectiveness Research Subcommittee (CER-SC), consisting of the authors of this article, housed within the Evidence-Based Practice Working Group (EBP-WG) of the International Society of Wheelchair Professionals (ISWP), conducted a scoping review of scientific literature and standard practices used during wheelchair service provision. The literature review was followed by a series of discussion groups.
Results: The three iterations of the conceptual framework are described in this manuscript.
Conclusion: We believe that adoption of this conceptual framework could have broad applications in wheelchair provision globally to develop evidence-based practices. Such a perspective will help in the comparison of different strategies employed in wheelchair provision and further improve clinical guidelines. Further work is being conducted to test the efficacy of this conceptual framework to evaluate effectiveness of wheelchair service provision in various settings across the globe.

Keywords

Assistive Technology; Wheelchair Provision; Conceptual Model

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