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Wheelchairs

Volume 489: debated on Tuesday 10 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what progress his Department has made towards publishing the outline model for wheelchair services as part of its transforming community equipment and wheelchair services programme; (261547)

(2) when he plans to publish the new model for wheelchair services; and what the reasons are for the time taken to publish the model;

(3) what estimate he has made of likely reductions in waiting times for (a) assessments for and (b) access to powered wheelchairs resulting from the proposed new model for wheelchair services;

(4) whether he plans to discuss his proposed new model for wheelchair services with (a) wheelchair users with multiple sclerosis and (b) other wheelchair service users and their carers.

Discussions are ongoing within the Department on the future model for wheelchair services so as to ensure that a model is developed which is suitable for the national health services and service users.

Stakeholder views are key in the development of any new model of service provision and wheelchair service user groups worked with the Care Services Efficiency Delivery programme on the future model for wheelchair services. Departmental officials have had and will continue to have meetings involving all groups of wheelchair service users and their carer, including multiple sclerosis, when required.

Waiting times, assessments and access to powered wheelchairs are the responsibility of the NHS and these data are not collected by the Department.