The Wheelchair Seating & Mobility Clinic at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation provides for the evaluation and determination of appropriate wheelchairs for individuals with disabilities and physical functional challenges resulting from spinal cord injury, brain injury, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), multiple sclerosis and other neurological injuries or illnesses, as well as orthopedic conditions.
Kessler’s team of wheelchair specialists – RESNA-certified Assistive Technology Practitioners (ATPs) — offer individuals the opportunity to examine and trial a variety of mobility and seating products at our West Orange center.
Wheelchair Seating & Mobility Clinic at Kessler Institute Process:
Assessment begins with an in-depth interview to determine an individual’s functional abilities, personal preferences and any lifestyle issues. A mat evaluation is then performed to determine if an individual has the flexibility and range of motion to sit with optimal postural alignment. This information will guide us in selecting the most appropriate seating system products.
Individuals are able to select from a vast array of commercial seating and mobility products and test them out in our clinic. By having our clients try a number of different off-the-shelf and custom products, we can recommend the best fit for their specific needs. We have the latest developments in wheelchair technology, including new lighter weight materials that offer greater performance, new assistive devices that can be incorporated into the system and advanced power chairs.
To ensure skin integrity, comfort and safety, we assess the pressure distribution along the individual’s seated body surface. This pressure mapping system enables us to compare cushions and back support, and to determine the best method of pressure relief.
We work closely with our vendors as well as the client’s medical doctor, family members/caregivers and other clinicians as warranted to recommend the best possible seating system. For those individuals with progressive medical conditions, we seek a system that offers flexibility to meet changing needs.
A Custom-Tailored Fit
Following the specific wheelchair and seating recommendations made by our team of rehabilitation professionals, we work with each client to ensure that the system is fitted properly to minimize the risk of pressure sores and secondary musculoskeletal complications. We also perform any necessary electronic adjustments to customize the performance of power chairs to meet individual preferences.
Finally, we strive to maximize independence and safety both indoors and outdoors by educating the client and his or her family members/caregiver on wheelchair mobility skills.