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British Red Cross boosts wheelchair service

31st March 2014

This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.

The NHS England Chief Executive Sir David Nicholson has pledged that he wants to kick-start the reform of wheelchair services, an area the Red Cross is already trying to improve. The Red Cross loans out tens of thousands of wheelchairs every year, free of charge to those who need them. Like stair lifts and walking aids, these wheelchairs help elderly users maintain the ‘full lives’ that Sir David feels is so important.

The British Red Cross stands as the UK’s largest provider of short-term loaned wheelchairs and with demands rising, particularly with older people in the country in need of mobility assistance, the NHS is looking to reform wheelchair services across the country. Many of those who use the Red Cross’ wheelchair service also benefit from other forms of mobility assistance, where stair lifts for wheelchair users with removable arms can also go a long way to making daily life more comfortable.

Statutory services

Under the second NHS Change Day that took place earlier this month, Sir Nicholson said that, “My pledge is to bring together people across the country, who are dedicated to improving services for people who use wheelchairs. Wheelchairs enable people to have full lives, and we need to revolutionise the way in which the NHS supports these people”.

Such changes to NHS services could revolutionise daily life for those in the country who rely on wheelchairs and riser recliner chairs for the elderly, and the Red Cross has pledged to do everything they can to support this aim. The Red Cross is already going a long way towards making this a reality as it offers free use of wheelchairs to those who need them on a temporary basis, as well as to elderly citizens who are travelling too far to take their personal mobility aids with them.

While Sir Nicholson is to retire this month, he has pledged to address the growing concern that the aging population of the country will put an increased pressure on such services provided by the NHS and the Red Cross. The Red Cross has supported these claims and are looking to do everything they can to support his successor, Simon Stevens, as he continues this pledge.

Image Credit: cherezoff  (shutterstock.com)