User Satisfaction and Wheelchair Skills in India: A Pilot Study

Alexandra N. Jefferds BS, Nahom Beyene MS, Nekram Upadhyay MS, Puneet Shoker BPT, Jonathan Pearlman PhD, and Rory A. Cooper PhD

Human Engineering Research Laboratories
Pittsburgh, PA 15206


We studied the impact of hospital-style and fitted wheelchairs on mobility skills and user satisfaction in an Indian population. The Wheelchair Skills Test (WST) and the Quebec User Evaluation of Satisfaction with assistive Technology (QUEST) were administered to clients of the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre (New Delhi, India) who were receiving new wheelchairs. Pre- and post-prescription data were gathered from seven (n=7) individuals. WST performance and attempted scores increased in the post-test, while safety decreased. QUEST scores increased, as did the number of responses in the service subsection. Our results suggest that these testing instruments would be valuable to measure the impact of service delivery and wheelchair technology among a community-dwelling population.


Wheelchair skills; user satisfaction; rehabilitation goals; appropriate technology; international


            This study was funded as an IREE supplement to the National Science Foundation ASPIRE REU grant # EEC 0552351 Additional thanks goes to Dr. H.S. Chhabra and the rest of the ISIC staff who assisted with our research.

Author Contact Information:

Alexandra Jefferds BS, University of Pittsburgh, Human Engineering Research Laboratories, Pittsburgh, PA, 15206, Office Phone (412) 954-5302, EMAIL: