Hardly an issue of New Mobility goes by without news of a fancy new wheelchair model, but when was the last time you went to a hospital or care facility and saw them using anything but the drab old steel chairs with the blue or brown slingback? The image of someone uncomfortably slumped over to one side while being pushed through a hospital or an airport immediately jumps into my head.
The design team at Movi Medical wants to replace those stock images with ones of users sitting comfortably in an elegant chair designed to help the healing process both physically and mentally. Their product, Movi, is a sleek and functional alternative to the traditional “patient movers.”
Lloyd Cooper, Movi’s designer, explains some of the problems with traditional “transport” chairs. “We had about eight key items to address, including increased maneuverability, low rolling resistance, minimizing patient falls, and improving access into and out of the chair,” says Cooper. “One very important item was minimizing staff injuries from assisting patients. We also looked at integrating medical equipment, such as IV poles or catheter bags, as a way to make the chair more efficient.”
The chair is tilted to improve ergonomics and comes with a battery-powered motor to facilitate raising or lowering and make transferring or standing easier. The attractive design helped get Movi selected as a finalist for Fast Company’s 2014 International Design Excellence Awards and wins raves from users who have tried it.
I understand these chairs likely aren’t for most New Mobility readers, but knowing how much desire there is for sleeker, better power and manual chairs, I think it’s worth highlighting any innovation around wheelchairs in general.