Breaking Mobility News – September 2020

Mobility News on Covid-19

Mobility news - virus
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Our latest issue of Mobility News is a focus on Covid-19. This is still headline news and with the implementation by the government of local lockdowns in specific areas for the next few months it isn’t going away anytime soon. The mobility sector has been heavily impacted by the  pandemic. In the most up to date new the disability news service (DNS), disabled and elderly people have made up about three – fifths of COVID – 19 related deaths in England and Wales.

Figures also go on to show that younger disabled males were 6.5 times likely to have died due to COVID – 19 . These statistics are a cause for concern and highlight the importance of vigilance in looking after yourself and your loved ones.

While COVID – 19 continues to be the main health issue of 2020, it is important that during these difficult times we continue to look after and support one another. Some popular social media influencers such as Gem Hubbard report feeling invisible during this pandemic. Gem explains that during one shopping trip she went to park her car in a blue bay and found that it had been replaced with a queuing area for the store.

On another occasion, she couldn’t get her wheelchair into and out of the store due to a sanitising station being placed in the main entrance. Times are difficult and for many there is an unwelcome adjustment period, if you do find yourself in a difficult position please always contact the store manager.

Keep your equipment clean

During this time it is important to look after ourselves and our loved ones. Thus, now more than ever it is important to keep our equipment clean, especially if we intend to leave our homes.

Gerald Simonds Healthcare states what wheelchair users especially should think about how to keep themselves safe during this pandemic. They mention the importance of cleaning wheelchair push rims, brakes and other accessories with the proper cleaning tools. This is a simple and effective way of protecting yourself and others from the spread of COVID-19. Another excellent piece of advice is to stay active and mobile. Government guidelines state we need to be very careful about who we meet and how and within what context.

The government advice is always changing so please make sure you continue to follow the most up to date advice. Physical activity is good for our mental health. Depending on government guidelines and your own personal circumstances try and spend some time outside. This could be in your garden or in your local park. Be sure to wear a mask if you do intend to leave the house, with government fines starting from £200 it would be remiss not to.

Wheelchair service support

In more mobility news according to Health Watch over 700,000 people have registered with the NHS for funded wheelchair services. The support provided by the NHS aims to help improve the quality of life for people who require the use of wheelchairs. There is quite a hefty waiting list with some reports that it can take up to 18 weeks to receive the services. To obtain support for servicing and maintenance this is a potential 3 month wait.

The wait times are a significant issue for many users, Health watch based on NHS data reports that the long wait times are having a significant impact on people and their health. People have reported to Health watch the long wait times to get equipment serviced, adjusted or repaired.  If the equipment can’t be fixed quickly, people can be left with poor quality of life.

We hope you enjoyed this blog. If you have any stories to share please get in touch.

Mobility News references

  • https://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/devastating-covid-deaths-figures-show-government-breached-disabled-peoples-right-to-life/
  • https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/disabled-people-excluded-post-lockdown-study-a9643431.html
  • https://www.gerald-simonds.co.uk/wheelchair-users-coronavirus/
  • https://www.healthwatch.co.uk/blog/2020-03-11/making-life-easier-improving-access-wheelchairs-and-mobility-equipmenthttps://wheelsnoheels.co.uk/about-gem/
  • https://www.independentliving.co.uk/industry-news/ons-improving-disability-data/

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