Assistive Devices & Wheelchair Assessment Program


Mobility and well-being

Mobility is crucial to our total well-being - especially for people who require assistive devices such as wheelchairs, walkers or artificial limbs. Considering that over time mobility can be compromised, having a well-prescribed wheelchair or assistive device can mean the difference between independence and being dependent on others. Gaylord's Assistive Devices and Wheelchair Assessment Service can improve mobility through the proper recommendation of customized wheelchairs and other assistive devices.

Wheelchair Assessment Service

The Wheelchair Assessment Service (click for brochure) is coordinated by registered physical therapists who are certified Assistive Technology Providers (ATP) with advanced training in seating and positioning. Rehab Technology Suppliers (RTS) are present at evaluations to assist in equipment selection and to provide the equipment to clients An added benefit is that proper evaluation and prescription can reduce costs associated with preventable complications that result from ill-fitting equipment such as:

  • Orthopedic deformity
  • Loss of skin integrity
  • Chronic pain syndromes
  • Depression

Video: Tips for Choosing the Right Wheelchair   (longer more detailed video)
"For people with spinal cord injuries (SCI), having the right wheelchair is critically important for independence and health. How do you make the right decisions about this expensive, vital piece of equipment? Jennifer Hastings, PhD, PT, is a nationally respected provider, researcher, and educator in wheelchair seating for people with SCI. She discusses the principles of seating for maintaining optimal health after spinal cord injury, the relationship between seating and skin health, and how and when pressure mapping may be useful. She also provides resources for finding a wheelchair seating expert."

Choosing a wheelchair video  Video: How to: Choose a Wheelchair
From the National Center on Health, Physical Activity & Disability 

What happens during a wheelchair assessment?

A Wheelchair Assessment Service appointment consists of a comprehensive evaluation to assess the following areas:

  • Goals and needs of the equipment user
  • Current and previous equipment
  • Functional abilities
  • Environments in which the equipment will be used in including home, work and school
  • Physical assessment including skin and soft tissue, passive range of motion, tone, active movement, pain, posture, balance, sensation and endurance

Through this evaluation, the goals of the seating and mobility system are determined. Extensive equipment simulation is performed to assist the wheelchair user and clinicians in equipment selection. Gaylord’s clinicians work closely with equipment manufacturers to ensure that a wide variety of state-of-the-art equipment options are available for wheelchair users to trial. Our clinicians stay abreast of ongoing developments in federal legislation affecting mobility equipment, in order to make appropriate recommendations. Goals for a wheelchair assessment include:

  • Maximizing independence with mobility
  • Recommending equipment that is functional, safe and comfortable
  • Improving posture and function while seated in a wheelchair
  • Preventing secondary complications caused by ill-fitting or malfunctioning equipment including orthopedic deformity, loss of skin integrity, pain and depression

Additional services include:

  • Computerized pressure mapping assessments to determine how to provide optimal pressure relief while seated in a wheelchair
  • Standing frame evaluations
  • Custom molded seat cushion and back support fabrication


Wheelchair Assessment brochure

For Information: (203) 284-2705

For Appointments:  (203) 284-2888, option 1


Gaylord Hospital Gaylord Wellness Center Gaylord Sleep Medicine / Guilford
Gaylord Hospital

Gaylord Farm Road

Wallingford, CT 06492

(203) 284-2800

Gaylord Physical Therapy, Orthopedics
and Sports Medicine

8 Devine Street

North Haven, CT 06473

203-230-9226 / 203-284-2818 Sleep Medicine

Gaylord Specialty Healthcare