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Supervised Wheelchair Mobility in Pediatric Clients

Michelle Lange, OTR, ABDA, ATP/SMS

February 19, 2014

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Question

How do payors view supervised wheelchair mobility in young clients? Will they pay for a power wheelchair?

Answer

This depends on the payor. Some have a certain criteria or age cut-off and will not pay for power wheelchairs for young children.  I think it is really important to document the rationale behind the equipment recommendation and how the caregivers will provide supervision (as they would do for any type of mobility at this age even in typical children).  As we discussed, kids, who have no mobility or limited mobility could benefit from a powered wheelchair to access their environment.  This builds foundational skills for better learning in the future.  It has also been shown by the research that children who have early mobility are more likely to attempt other forms of mobility.


michelle lange

Michelle Lange, OTR, ABDA, ATP/SMS

Michelle is an occupational therapist with over 30 years of experience and has been in private practice, Access to Independence, for over 10 years. She is a well-respected lecturer, both nationally and internationally and has authored numerous texts, chapters, and articles. She is the co-editor of Seating and Wheeled Mobility: a clinical resource guide, editor of Fundamentals in Assistive Technology, 4th ed., NRRTS Continuing Education Curriculum Coordinator and Clinical Editor of NRRTS Directions magazine. Michelle is a RESNA Fellow and member of the Clinician Task Force. Michelle is a certified ATP, certified SMS and is a Senior Disability Analyst of the ABDA. 

 


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