How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines?

How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines
How to request for wheelchair access via the Southwest Airline’s website 1. Visit 2. Click on the flight options on the top part of the page 3. Scroll to the bottom of the page, and click on the customer service icon 4. Click on the passenger and payment info page 5. Choose the special assistance option 6.

How do I add a wheelchair after booking?

How To Get Wheelchair At Airport for a Person Having Disability or Injury? | Wheelchair Assistance At Airport Travelling by airplanes can seem to be a daunting challenge for people with special needs or for individuals who suffer from an injury. At such times, people with reduced mobility are unable to board their flight without the help of a wheelchair at airports. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines Nowadays, airports and airlines offer several options for people who wish to opt for wheelchair assistance. However, there are certain steps and measures that you need to take to ensure that you get a wheelchair at the airport.

So, let’s look at how to get a wheelchair at the airport for a person having disability or injury. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines Yes, your preparation for getting wheelchair assistance at airports needs to begin before you even book your flight. Also, in case you are flying for the first time, early preparation might be one of the most

You can start by checking with your respective airline about the guidelines for wheelchair assistance. Since almost all airlines offer wheelchair assistance at airports, you need to check for the related guidelines and policies to avoid any kind of last-minute hassles. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines For example, if you wish to get wheelchair assistance with IndiGo, you need to notify them about your special needs/requests at least 48 hours prior to your scheduled departure. Apart from this, you can also inform them about your wheelchair requirement while making your booking. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines This will help you get a clear idea about the airline policies for flying with a personal wheelchair at the airport as well as sizing requirements of your wheelchair. You can either check for this information on their website or you could give a call on one of their helpline numbers. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines You can then contact the concerned airline for a wheelchair facility at the airport. You can also do this at the ‘Airline Counter’ in the ‘Visitor’s Lobby’. After your wheelchair is approved, a helper or assistant will be assigned to you. The assistant will guide you through the airport. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines Also, most airlines offer the pre-boarding facilities for individuals with special needs as part of their wheelchair assistance. You need to inform the gate staff about your pre-boarding plans in order to use this wheelchair facility at airports. You need to also be present near the gate early so that you can have a hassle-free boarding experience. How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines In addition to this, you need to be prepared for the recent coronavirus pandemic as well. While you carry your passport and other important documents, you need to and also, So, the next time you are worried about how to get wheelchair assistance at airport, you can just relax and follow these basic steps.

How to get wheelchair assistance southwest airlines?

Wheelchairs and Assisted Devices | Southwest Airlines How do I request a wheelchair or let Southwest® know I’ll be bringing my own? Customers who require assistance must identify themselves as needing wheelchair assistance upon arrival to the airport, at any connection points, and upon arrival to their destination.

On desktop: Go to the Special Assistance link on the “Passenger & Payment Info” screen. On mobile: Go to the Special Assistance link on the “Passenger” screen.

Adding a wheelchair to an existing booking : If you’re checking your own wheelchair, you may print and complete the, How do I get through security with my wheelchair? Before screening, let the TSA officer know if you can or can’t walk or stand unassisted. You can show the officer your TSA notification card or other medical paperwork to describe your disability. Passenger screening

Screening technology: If you’re able to stand with your arms above your head for seven seconds without support, you may be screened with advanced imaging technology or a metal detector. If you cannot or if you opt-out, you will receive a pat-down. Pat-down: Pat-downs are conducted by a TSA officer of the same gender. If the screening involves a sensitive area, it may be conducted in private with a companion. You can always request a private screening.

Mobility aids screening

Walkers, crutches, canes, or other mobility aids must be X-rayed or hand-inspected by a TSA officer if it cannot fit through the X-ray. Wheelchairs and scooters must be X-rayed, including the seat cushions and any non-removable pouches or fanny packs.

Where will my wheelchair be stowed during the flight? Each plane has a specially designed wheelchair storage compartment for in-cabin stowage of at least one standard-size, adult, collapsible wheelchair. This compartment is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

  1. If this compartment is occupied or the wheelchair can’t fit, it will be stowed safely beneath the plane.
  2. We suggest that all removable parts (e.g., cushions, arm or leg rests, and side guards) are stowed in an overhead bin or under a seat if possible.
  3. How do I get my wheelchair after landing? Before you board, tell an Employee that you’ll need wheelchair assistance after landing.

When you land, identify yourself to the Flight Attendant and wait for your wheelchair to be brought to the jet bridge. Can I bring a battery-powered wheelchair or mobility aid onto the plane? Yes, we accept battery-powered chairs and mobility aids if unintentional activation can be prevented in one of these ways:

Key turned to off position and removed. Securing the device “on/off” switch to the “off” position. Quick disconnection of the joystick on a wheelchair. Removing the battery and isolating the terminals.

Does my battery-powered device need to be inspected before boarding? Yes, we need to determine that your device’s battery is acceptable for transportation. We check the following:

The battery label is legible and in English. The battery shows no signs of defects or damage. The device has mechanical prevention for unintentional activation, or the battery can be disconnected, and the terminals protected from short circuit.

The battery must be properly secured to the device or it will have to be removed and packaged separately. Where will my battery-powered wheelchair or mobility aid be stored? Battery-powered wheelchairs and mobility aids will be securely stowed in the cargo compartment.

We recommend that all removable parts of the wheelchair be stowed in the overhead bins. If the lithium-ion battery or batteries have to be removed due to one of the reasons above, the battery or batteries must be protected from short circuit and transported as carryon by the passenger. Rules for spillable batteries.

If an assistive device is powered by a spillable battery, the battery will be removed and placed in a protective battery box, as required by federal HAZMAT safety regulations and the battery transported in checked baggage. The passenger must provide instructions on battery removal.

  • A spare spillable battery is not allowed.
  • Rules for non-spillable batteries.
  • If the battery is securely attached to the mobility aid, protected from short circuit, and the device has a means of protecting itself from unintentional activation, the battery may remain installed.
  • Non-spillable batteries not installed or security attached must be transported as checked baggage and packaged in strong, rigid packaging marked “NONSPILLABLE,” “NONSPILLABLE BATTERY,” or “Not Restricted” and the battery terminals must be protected from short circuit.

Customers may bring one spare non-spillable battery. Spare non-spillable batteries must also be transported as checked baggage. Rules for lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. If a mobility aid is powered by a lithium-ion battery, the device must be transported as checked baggage.

When the Li-ion battery is securely attached and protected from short-circuit by being fully enclosed in the device’s battery housing, the battery may remain installed in the device and there is no limit to the battery size. If the battery is not securely attached, it must be removed and transported separately as carryon baggage.

See also:  What Terminal Is American Airlines At Dca?

The battery terminals must be protected from short circuit. There is a single battery size limit of 300 watt-hours (Wh). If the device utilizes two batteries, each battery cannot exceed 160 Wh. A maximum of one spare battery not exceeding 300 Wh or two spares not exceeding 160 Wh each may be carried onboard.

The battery’s size in watt-hours must be displayed on the battery, or the battery should be labeled with its voltage and amp-hour (or milliamp-hour) ratings to allow for size calculation (see formula below) if needed. Any spare batteries must be transported as carryon baggage with the battery terminals protected to prevent short circuit.

Some Li-ion batteries do not display the watt-hour rating on the battery label. The following formulas may be used to determine the watt-hours rating for a Lithium-ion battery: If the battery lists the Amp-hour rating, use this formula:

Volts (V) x Amp-hours (Ah) = Watt-hours (Wh)

Example for a single battery:

10 volts multiplied by 24 Amp-hours = 240 watt-hours The 240 watt-hours are below the 300 watt-hour limit for a single battery, so the battery would be allowed.

If the battery lists the Milliamp-hour rating, use this formula instead:

Volts (V) x Milliamp-hours (mAh) ÷ 1,000 = Watt-hours (Wh)

What items are not accepted as mobility aids? The following portable electronic devices (PEDs) are not recognized by the HAZMAT Regulations as mobility aids. Southwest Airlines prohibits these types of PEDs in checked or carryon baggage regardless of battery type, even if the battery is not installed.

Hoverboards Skateboards Gravity boards Segway PT Ninebot MiniPRO Onewheel Razor Uni‐Wheel products e-Bikes Rideable suitcases

Which restraint systems are accepted? You can use FAA-approved child restraint systems (CRS) onboard if the safety seat has the appropriate manufacturer’s label. We also accept seats approved by the United Nations (UN) or foreign governments. The child restraint system must have a stamp or decal or some other mark that indicates foreign government approval.

  1. Seats manufactured under the standards of the UN must have a label with a circle surrounding the letter E, followed by a number assigned to the country that has granted approval.
  2. It is important to note that the CARES child restraint system is the only harness-type device approved for use onboard.
  3. The device is designed for Customers weighing between 22 and 44 pounds and must have a label that indicates, “FAA Approved in Accordance with 14 CFR 21.305(d), Approved for Aircraft Use Only.” Additionally, please know the FAA has banned certain types of child restraints that may be harmful to a child in the event of an aviation emergency.

These include backless booster seats and any device that ties the child to another person. If a Customer will need to use any other type of non-approved restraint system to accommodate his/her disability during taxi, takeoff, and/or landing, the device must be approved by the FAA prior to travel.

  • Customers may file a petition for exemption with the FAA.
  • Instructions for submitting the petition may be found by visiting the FAA’s web site.
  • Please note that the petition should be filed at least 120 days before the proposed date of travel.
  • If the petition is approved, the Customer will be required to present a copy of the approval letter upon arrival at the airport and may be required to do so at any other point during travel.

Can I use a restraint system in any seat? You are welcome to use a restraint system in middle seats or window seats. If placed in a middle seat, the child restraint system can’t prevent the window seat occupant from leaving the row. Child restraint systems can’t be placed in an exit seat or in a row directly in front of or behind an exit row.

Does Southwest Airlines board wheelchairs first?

Preboarding is available for Customers who have a specific seating need to accommodate their disability and/or need assistance in boarding the aircraft or stowing an assistive device.

How do you ask for a wheelchair access?

Communicating effectively with people with disability – The key to resolving any accessibility issues is respectful and effective communication with consumers with disability, and the provision of practical assistance in response to their requests. Training your staff on how to communicate with people with disability is an important step in ensuring you are providing an accessible service.

Talk directly to the person with disability, not the other people who may be with them (such as a sign language interpreter). Ask the person first if they want assistance, and if they answer yes, ask how you can best assist them. Do not assume they need assistance, or that you know what they require. If a person is Deaf or has a hearing impairment:

make sure you face the person when you speak move out of areas with lots of background noise have a pen and paper to help you communicate, if necessary.

If a person has a vision impairment or is blind:

identify yourself by name to them if appropriate, ask for their name so you can address them directly and they know you are talking to them if the person asks for assistance to go somewhere, ask which side they would prefer that you stand and offer your arm so they can hold onto it.

Do not pat, talk to, or otherwise distract a guide dog or other assistance animal.

Use appropriate language – For example use the term ‘person with disability’ rather than ‘disabled person’. When describing facilities for people with disability, use the word ‘accessible’ (e.g. ‘accessible toilet’, ‘accessible parking’, ‘accessible entry’).

Can we book wheelchair in flight?

Can a wheelchair be made available to me all the way to the aircraft? – A. Yes. Passengers are requested to pre-book wheelchairs at the time of flight booking / ticket issuance to avoid last minute delays / non availability of wheelchairs. However, business class passengers should note that if traveling by the B747/COMBI/744 aircraft types, ascending/descending steps will be necessary.

Is wheelchair free at airport?

There are times when travelers need help navigating airports, especially large, complex ones like Hartsfield-Jackson International, The 1986 Air Carrier Access Act requires airlines to provide free wheelchair service to any traveler who asks for it, without requiring a description or documentation for that need.

Can you board a wheelchair earlier?

The right to preboard the airplane before all other passengers is a civil right guaranteed to disabled people by the Air Carrier Access Act, But, like all other civil rights, it can be waived by the individual if they so choose. Preboarding is a great benefit for disabled people, as it affords extra time and privacy to board the airplane, stow carry-on baggage and medical equipment, and to be comfortably seated.

But in this time of the coronavirus pandemic, it may make sense to waive that right and board last. Some U.S. airlines have adjusted their boarding process, initiating a back-to-front boarding order that allows passengers seated in the rear of the aircraft to board first. This modification has been designed to prevent passengers from having to pass one another to reach their seats, thereby reducing the risk of viral transmission at least to some limited degree.

Disabled passengers are typically seated at the front of the plane in either first class (if they have paid for an upgrade) or in the first few rows of the economy cabin. Exercising their right to preboard could expose them to face-to-face contact with the majority of passengers who board thereafter.

To eliminate some risk, disabled passengers can opt to board the aircraft last. Most airlines make a last call for boarding at 15 minutes prior to departure and close the boarding gate at 10 minutes before departure. Any passenger who presents themselves at the gate prior to the close of boarding is entitled to board the aircraft, with or without assistance.

Although airlines may find it difficult to quickly load power wheelchairs and other mobility equipment presented at the end of boarding, your health and wellbeing are far more important than an on-time departure. For non-ambulatory passengers opting to board last, the benefit of reduced contact is likely to exist only on the front end, as passengers using the aisle chair will still be the last to deplane.

  1. The contact during deplaning intuitively comes with less risk as the direction of approach will not be face-to-face.
  2. If you are seated at the front of the aircraft and are concerned about being in close proximity to other passengers during boarding, you should strongly consider waiving your right to preboard.
See also:  What Airlines Fly To Santa Barbara?

While it won’t make your air travel journey truly safe in the midst of a global pandemic, there is surely some value in reducing contact wherever possible — in this case, during the initial loading of the aircraft. Featured image courtesy Delta Air Lines.

Do people in wheelchairs get off the plane first?

Flying Tips for Wheelchair Users, From Wheelchair Users (Published 2019) Air travel can cause a great deal of apprehension for both seasoned and novice travelers. If you’re taking that flight with a wheelchair — that’s an added level of stress.

Send any friend a story As a subscriber, you have 10 gift articles to give each month. Anyone can read what you share. Give this article Give this article Give this article

How To Request A Wheelchair On Southwest Airlines Credit. Lars Leetaru By Barbara Twardowski and Jim Twardowski People often say that traveling is all about the journey and not the destination, but for wheelchair users, navigating air travel is often more of an adventure than they would like. Rolling through large crowded airports, hauling luggage, waiting in long lines, receiving a pat down, being strapped into a tiny aisle chair and then sitting for hours unable to move is exhausting.

We’ve learned that the best way to circumvent some of the inevitable issues is to know what to expect, and prepare accordingly. Before clicking the purchase button, even seasoned travelers should review the airline’s policies regarding passengers with disabilities. John Morris, a triple amputee who has flown more than 850,000 miles in the past five years, writes about accessibility for his website,

He discovered, after reading AirAsia’s website, that he cannot fly with the airline because his battery-operated wheelchair weighs more than the airline allows. When choosing a seat, Mr. Morris prefers a window to avoid being crawled over by other passengers.

Other travelers, particularly those who cannot transfer from a wheelchair to their seat independently, may prefer the aisle seat. The roomier bulkhead seating might be an option for some, just be aware the armrests do not raise. Also, keep in mind that wheelchair users exit the aircraft last. The deplaning process can easily take 25 minutes or more, so when booking a connecting flight, always allow ample time.

Mr. Morris recommends a minimum of 90 minutes. Considering that quick layover might be your only opportunity to visit a restroom, those extra few minutes are precious. After booking your flight, contact the airline at least 48 hours in advance of departure and let them know you will need special assistance.

  1. If you must change airlines, which can be common on international flights, be sure to notify them, too.
  2. The way the airlines treat our equipment causes some wheelchair users to not travel at all, and that breaks my heart,” said Sylvia Longmire, a former U.S.
  3. Air Force officer who travels the world solo on her small power wheelchair.

Ms. Longmire also writes, an accessible travel website. You can help prevent wheelchair damage by attaching written instructions explaining how to operate your chair, as well as how it folds and tilts. Before turning a wheelchair over to airport personnel, take off any removable parts such as the seat cushion, removable wheels and footrests.

These items may be carried on the plane and do not count as baggage. For your own baggage, carry as little luggage as possible. The airline’s curbside baggage check can be helpful if available, or consider purchasing a rolling suitcase designed to attach to a wheelchair. Finally, always carefully inspect your wheelchair for damage when it’s returned to you and immediately notify the airline if there is a problem.

Document any damage you find with photos that you can send to the airline, as well to file a compensation claim. Many domestic flights are on single-aisle planes which rarely have accessible bathrooms onboard. Even though wide-body planes (those with two aisles) are required to have an accessible lavatory, the tight configuration doesn’t work for many travelers with disabilities.

To avoid embarrassment, always confirm before departure that the plane has an onboard wheelchair. Flight attendants can push you to the bathroom. They do not assist with transferring to a toilet or providing personal care. Better yet, consider that domestic airports are required to have accessible restrooms in all terminals; you will definitely be better off using the toilet before you depart.

However, some small or older airports in the United States, and others abroad may not have them. Staff at the information desk in the airport can guide you to an accessible or family bathroom, or you can review the terminal layout on a nearby map or on your smartphone before you depart to find the closest accessible restroom.

Although it isn’t healthy, Ms. Longmire stops eating and drinking the day before a flight. Other travelers might choose to use a catheter or wear protective undergarments. Upon arrival at the airport, remind your airline that you need wheelchair assistance. At the Transportation Security Administration checkpoint, passengers who cannot stand or walk go through a pat-down administered by an officer of their same gender.

explains the process in detail. You may also call the T.S.A. Cares help line (855-787-2227) at least 72 hours before flying with any questions. Once you get to the gate, tell the agent you have a disability and want to pre-board. Unfortunately, you cannot roll on the aircraft and remain in your wheelchair.

Passengers who are unable to walk are transferred to a narrow, high-backed aisle chair with security straps. The preboarding is a safety measure that allows people with disabilities the additional time or assistance they need to get to their seats. The (A.C.C.A.) states individuals with disabilities are to board “before all other passengers, including first class passengers, elite-level passengers, members of the military, passengers with small children, etc.” The A.C.C.A.

prevents discrimination on the basis of disability and applies to all U.S. airlines and flights on foreign carriers that fly into or out of the United States. The Department of Transportation enforces the A.C.C.A. If you encounter an access problem at the airport and the airline is unable to resolve it, ask to speak with the Complaint Resolution Official.

Each air carrier is required to have one or more available on site or by phone. This specially trained individual has the authority to problem solve on the spot. Barbara and Jim Twardowski write about travel, lifestyle and Baby Boomer topics. Given that Barbara uses a wheelchair and Jim is a registered nurse, they frequently cover accessible travel.

Follow Barbara on Twitter at, : Flying Tips for Wheelchair Users, From Wheelchair Users (Published 2019)

Where do wheelchair users sit on planes?

Request bulkhead seating – When booking your flight, think about what seating would work best for your needs. Bulkhead seating typically works best for wheelchair users since it’s the first row of seats in economy class. By requesting a bulkhead seat, you can avoid being wheeled farther back in the plane, and the bulkhead seats usually allow more legroom and space to transfer.

When should you ask for a wheelchair?

Before Your Departure Date – Allow extra time between flights. You may encounter delays if you are traveling during the summer or the holidays, when wheelchair attendants are busy helping other passengers. Choose the largest airplane available when making reservations.

  1. You will have more seating and restroom options available to you on an airplane that seats more than 60 passengers and / or has two or more aisles.
  2. Call your airline and request wheelchair assistance at least 48 hours before your trip begins.
  3. If possible, call earlier.
  4. The customer service representative will put a “requires special assistance” note in your reservation record and tell your departure, arrival and transfer airports to provide a wheelchair.
See also:  What Airlines Fly To Destin Fort Walton Beach?

Be aware that some airlines, such as Air China, will only permit a certain number of passengers requiring onboard wheelchairs on each flight. Think about meals before you travel. You may not be able to buy food before or between flights. Your wheelchair attendant is not required to take you to a restaurant or fast food stand.

How do you write a letter requesting for a wheelchair?

I am writing to you because I would like to request to have a wheelchair. I would like to have a wheelchair so that I can get around my place of work better, and I can go out of my home anytime that I like. Due to my disability I am unable to get about by myself I always have to have help.

How do I book a wheelchair for domestic flights in the US?

Wheelchair and Guided Assistance Tips – Before Your Trip

You should make reservations as early as possible and advise the airline what type of assistance you will need. For example, you should indicate whether you need wheelchair assistance or guided assistance.Request an airport wheelchair when you make your reservation if you are unable to walk long distances.If you travel with a battery-powered wheelchair, you must arrive at the airport 1 hour prior to the normal check-in time.Confirm your accessibility needs with all airlines involved in your journey.

At the airport

Arrive at the airport as early as possible to allow time to check any baggage, go through the security screening, and board the plane.When you arrive at the airport, it is important that you self-identify as a passenger with a disability needing assistance. Although the airline may have notated in your reservation that you need assistance, the airline will not know that you are the person who requested that assistance if you do not self-identify.Be alert to gate and flight time changes and notify airline personnel of your need to move to a different gate, if necessary.Advise airline personnel at the boarding gate of any assistance you may need (e.g. pre-board, assistance with carry-on luggage or moving within the aircraft)You are entitled to stay in your own wheelchair until you get to the gate. At the gate, your wheelchair will be taken from you. If you cannot walk, you will be transported to your aircraft seat in an aisle chair. Your wheelchair will be returned to you at the gate once you reach your destination.

On the aircraft

Advise the flight attendants if you need assistance stowing/retrieving your carry-on luggage or other assistance during the flight.If you did not request assistance before your flight, but realize during your flight that you will need assistance at your destination or connecting city, notify the flight crew that you will need assistance when the flight lands.If you need wheelchair assistance to get off of the aircraft, you should know that airlines generally provide this assistance after all other passengers have deplaned.

Encounter A Problem? If you believe your rights under the Air Carrier Access Act are being or have been violated, ask to speak with a Complaints Resolution Official (CRO). A CRO is the airline’s expert on disability accommodation issues. Airlines are required to make one available to you, at no cost, in person at the airport or by telephone during the times they are operating.

Who can get special assistance at airport?

Passengers with disabilities and reduced mobility

If you’re a passenger with a disability or reduced mobility you are legally entitled to support, commonly known as ‘Special Assistance’, when travelling by air.This means airports and airlines must provide help and assistance, which is free of charge, and helps ensure you have a less stressful journey.Special assistance is available to passengers who may need help to travel such as the elderly, those people with a physical disability, such as wheelchair users, and those who have difficulty with social interaction and communication, such as those with autism or dementia.Your right to special assistance is stipulated in UK law and applies when:

You fly on any airline from a UK airport You fly on an EU or UK registered airline to an UK airport You fly from outside of the UK or EU to the EU on a UK carrier

Passengers who want special assistance should aim to give their airline 48 hours notice of the help they require. Help is available from the moment you arrive at an airport and can cover:

your journey through your departure airport boarding the aircraft and during the flight disembarking the aircraft transferring between flightsand travelling through your destination airport.

How to book flight tickets for physically handicapped?

Locomotor Disability Concession Eligibility: Disabled persons suffering from locomotor disability to the extent of 80% and above and are residents of India. Conditions falling under this category include cases of- Paraplegia, Hemplegia, Cerebral palsy, severe cases of Poliomyelitis, Kyphosis, Muscular dystrophies, Amputees. Required Documents: Certificate issued by a Chief District medical officer or a board constituted by Government hospital. Bookings cannot be made online. Kindly contact a nearest Air India office for further assistance. Discount: 50% of Basic fare of select booking class in Economy cabin. Travel: Any sectors within India Ticket Validity: 1 Year from date of issue Children No discount applies. Infant (Under 2 years) 1st accompanying Infant – INR 1250 per coupon, Plus applicable taxes.2nd and more Infants, no discount permissible. Advance Purchase: Ticket to be purchased 3 days before departure. Date/Flight change, Cancellation & Refund: Permitted – Fee applies In case the relevant ID / documents are not presented at the time of check in or at the boarding gate, the basic fare will be forfeited and the tickets will become non refundable (only taxes & levies will be refunded). Boarding will be denied if the identity proof is not provided at the time of check in and at the boarding gate. Concessionary Fares are applicable on Air India operated flights only. Concessionary Fares are not applicable on Airindia Express Code share domestic flights.

How do you write a prescription for a wheelchair?

Medical Evaluation Guidance to Avoid Funding Denials –

  • “Mobility Evaluation” must be the main reason for the visit.
  • Use standard note format, not supplier provided forms.
  • “Medical Necessity” is based only on “in home use.”
  • Objective quantification of strength and mobility is required (usually performed by seating therapist).
  • Use terms with clear functional boundaries, such as “nonfunctional or therapeutic only ambulation” versus “difficulty walking.”

The evaluation performed by the seating specialist supports the necessity of specific wheelchair equipment as it relates to mobility-related ADLs. This includes subjective and objective data regarding the patient’s impairments, functional level, current equipment, activity, and participation.

  1. Coordination with the seating specialist is critical, as denials occur when the medical and seating evaluations are discordant.4, 5 The PCP and seating specialist collaboratively write a wheelchair prescription after the face-to-face encounter.
  2. This prescription includes wheelchair type, initial date and duration of need, specific components (eg, cushion, backrest, power seat functions), and medical justification.

The PCP’s medical justification must document the face-to-face encounter, mobility limitations that cannot be resolved with other mobility aids (eg, cane or walker), where the wheelchair will be used, and that home mobility will be improved. The seating specialist provides specification of and justification for medical necessity for components including arms/foot/leg rests, rear wheels, cushions, and seat frame modifications.

Do I need a prescription for a new wheelchair?

So what if you want to buy a wheelchair, do you need a prescription? No. You do not need a doctor’s prescription to purchase a wheelchair out-of-pocket.