The National, Wednesday July 17th, 2013
By PISAI GUMAR
AN intermediate level wheelchair training course was held at the national orthotics and prosthetic service centre (NOPS) at Angau Memorial Hospital in Lae.
Twelve participants, two from Kiribati and 10 from PNG attended the theoretical and practical training from July 3-16, part of PNG’s access to mobility programme in partnership with NOPS, PNG assembly of disabled persons and Motivation Australia (MA).
MA senior clinical coordinator Lauren Flaherty and design director Ray Mines conducted the training on how to provide an appropriate wheelchair and cushion for people who needed additional support to sit upright and close upright.
National board of disability chairman Rex Larry said the course included assessing wheelchair users who required additional postural support to identify possible mobility and sitting solution; prescribing, preparing and fitting manual wheelchair with an appropriate cushion and modifications of postural support devices.
It also included training of wheelchair users (and their carer) to make use of their wheelchair, carrying out follow-ups to evaluate the effectiveness of a user’s wheelchair and seating solutions.
“At this pace of development, various development agencies and stakeholders have neglected the mobility of people with disabilities by not providing wheelchair access onto roads and footpaths, into buildings, toilets and various public amenities,” Larry said.