Consumer’s Report of Usability Issues with Power Wheelchairs

Sajay Arthanat, Ph.D (c)., OTR, ATP, James A. Lenker, Ph.D., OTR/L, Stephen M. Bauer, Ph.D.


The Usability Scale for Assistive Technology for Wheeled Mobility (USAT-WM) is a newly developed tool to measure usability of wheeled-mobility devices as a reflection of the interaction among the user, the wheelchair, the environment and the mobility. The psychometric properties of this instrument were evaluated by field testing it to sample of 70 power wheelchair (PWC) users. This paper reports usability issues of power wheelchairs captured by the USAT-WM by descriptive analysis of the field-test data. The results suggest that usability of PWCs is optimal within the contexts of home and workplace, and sub-optimal in the community and outdoors.


Usability, Wheeled Mobility, Wheelchairs, Outcomes Research


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