Wheelchair provision - short-term loans: guidance

Statutory guidance on the provision of wheelchairs on short term loan to support rehabilitation and independence.

Length of loan period

The length of a loan will vary from individual to individual and should be based on an assessment of the person's needs.

Currently, the five regional wheelchair centres provide wheelchairs to people who require a wheelchair for permanent and substantial use. This has been interpreted as a need lasting 6 months or more.

Between April 2018 and March 2020 the EquipU partnership loaned a total of 73 wheelchairs.

The average loan period was 4-8 weeks, with the longest loan being 4 months.

Therefore, in order to address needs of 6 months or less, criteria should be set in place by local services to assist staff assessing for these needs. Although, the Equipu Partnership (see example above) had initially set a tighter timescale of 12 weeks, it is made clear in their Protocol, that needs can be met up to the 6 months maximum. In reality, it is unusual for someone with short term needs to require a wheelchair beyond 4 months unless their condition has changed, and a reassessment of all their needs would be required.

  • Integration Authorities must agree locally how they will address needs of less than 6 months, and put in place criteria and arrangements to deliver this service, and monitor provision.


Email: HSCIntegration@gov.scot

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