‘Movi’ May Be the Next Generation of Hospital Wheelchairs

Jul 31, 2013

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Anyone who has ever experienced hospital wheelchairs certainly knows they are uncomfortable and, in some cases, dangerous. A University of Alabama at Birmingham hospital executive recognized a need to prevent injuries from occurring when patients were moved in and out of hospital wheelchairs. As a result, the Movi was created.

Man Pushes Father in Movi

Lloyd Cooper, founder of PUSH Product Design, was the industrial designer on the project. He said the idea to reinvent the wheelchair was the result of a serious problem with wheelchair-related patient and hospital staff injuries, which insurance companies label as “hospital acquired conditions,” for which the companies decline to cover.

“Over the last few years, insurance quit paying for slip-and-fall injuries in hospitals because it has become the hospital’s responsibility,” Cooper said.

“There are a lot of issues with a wheelchair in a hospital,” Dr. Will Ferniany, CEO of UAB Health System said. “There’s no storage capacity. There are problems with the footrests. And they tend to get stolen. But the most important thing is that staff and patients get hurt. They hurt backs and muscles. Ever try to get anybody out of wheelchair? It’s hard.”

Woman Reclines in Movi

The new Movi not only looks much more futuristic, it also has a host of features that benefit both the patient and the nursing staff who use wheelchairs to transport patients throughout the hospital.

Movi Motor

Along with a motor that lifts and lowers the chair for easier access and exit, the new design has storage behind the chair, an IV pole, and an automatic lift that puts the footrest flush with the floor so patients can rise from the seat with less risk.

In addition, it also takes patient comfort into consideration. Traditional hospital-grade wheelchairs sit the patient at a 90 degree angle, which is bad for the back and doesn’t allow for repositioning. For patients in long-term care facilities, this can result in pressure sores. The Movi has a more natural sitting angle that does not compress the spine, and it’s also adjustable to allow a broader range of angles to relieve pressure and prevent sores.

Movi Lifts for Easy Access

The Movi does require someone to push the chair, as it does not have large wheels that allow the patient to self-propel like traditional wheelchairs. In hospitals, this is not much of a concern, as nursing and support staff are required to transport patients. The designers do not think it will be a major concern for potential home use, either, as the people most likely to use a Movi will have a caretaker to assist with mobility.

Is the future of hospital wheelchairs looking up? What do you like best about the Movi?

Sources:
blog.al.com/spotnews/2013/05/dont_call_it_a_wheelchair_its.html
movimedical.com/movi-for-home/

Video Source:
blog.al.com

Image Sources:
blog.al.com
movimedical.com

About the author

Jill Liphart
Jill Liphart

Jill is a writer, blogger, social media and Internet marketer, work-at-home, single mom of 5. She provides news about issues that are important to people with disabilities, their loved ones, disability advocates and their friends.

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2 Comments

  1. Janelle A
    July 31, 2013

    I like the Movi but will there be one that patients can wheel themselves ?

    • Amelia
      August 05, 2013

      Hi Janelle! These chairs were specifically designed as transport chairs for hospital use. They may, at some point, level up to personal use with the ability for people to navigate the chair themselves, but for now, they’re only available as is. They CAN be purchased for home use, but someone will have to push the chair for the time being. http://movimedical.com/movi-for-home/

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