ALS News Today Forums Forums Living With ALS What features would you want if you were designing a mobility scooter?

  • What features would you want if you were designing a mobility scooter?

    Posted by Dagmar on September 30, 2019 at 6:00 am

    This survey first appeared in  MS Wire column, by Ed Tobias, a fellow writer for BioNews Services. He reports about a husband and wife team who are trying to design the ultimate mobility scooter for people with neurological conditions.

    Do you use a scooter? If so, is there anything you’d change?

    The backstory

    For the past four years, Emily and Tom Morgan have been trying to design an electric mobility scooter that will do it all. They have two relatives who have MS, and from what they’ve observed, there’s a need for a better scooter.

    Tom is a mechanical engineer, and Emily is an information technology specialist. Combining their knowledge with that of friends, some of whom are professional industrial designers and ‘prototypers,’ they’ve come up with a rough design. But they’d like some input from us — folks who actually ride these things. So, they’ve put together an online survey. It takes about 10 minutes to complete — and I think it’s time well-spent.

    The survey

    If you’d like to help out by providing some input on the design of a new mobility scooter, you can go to the survey here.

    Dagmar replied 4 years, 6 months ago 2 Members · 2 Replies
  • 2 Replies
  • Diana Belland

    September 30, 2019 at 10:36 am

    I’ve completed the survey.  The questions were excellent.  I don’t currently own a scooter but am interested in purchasing one for travel.   I often see people using motorized wheelchairs and scooters when we travel, and I envy the autonomy they seem to have, especially those with scooters.

    I’m interested to know from others who use scooters and/or motorized wheelchairs the advantages or disadvantages of one over the other.   I would also like to know if Medicare covers some of the cost.

    Thank you!

  • Dagmar

    October 8, 2019 at 4:46 pm

    I don’t think Medicare covers scooters but it does cover a motorized wheelchair (per doctor recommendation). With either, you do need to think about transporting it — we have a van with a side-door ramp. I like having the ability to change my body position or stand and worry that a wheelchair would force me to be in a seated position all the time.

    My scooter was around $800 and purchased via Amazon. Arrived in 3 days. I think you can purchase a motorized wheelchair (one of our forum members shared with me he has a “chair from Jazzy called a Jazzy Air… This is a chair for tall folks and I was able to get it with a 19 inch seat depth. It’s called “air” because it rises 10″ at the touch of a button. I love to be face to face in a group and to be able to reach things that are high.  This is OK now but after several hours I need to get out of it.” Not sure how much he paid, but online it is listed at $3,000+.

    Here’s a good article by Rick Jobus on the topic of chairs.

    Then consider traveling. I’ve not heard good reports from others about how airlines damage their chairs (goes into the cargo hold). Check out this recent story from another columnist:

    Do talk this over with your PT, OT and neurologist. They will be able to answer a lot of your questions.



    Life on Wheels and Self-Image

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