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Latest figures show some people waiting over four months for NHS wheelchairs

22 August 2023

There is a target in place for people to be assessed and wheelchairs to be delivered to them within 18 weeks of a referral, but thousands were forced to wait longer across England.

Latest figures from NHS England show 82% of children and 86% of adults received wheelchairs within 18 weeks or less. A slight improvement from last year where the numbers stood at 80% and 85%, respectively.

Neeru Naik, Deputy Director of Care, Campaigns and Support at Muscular Dystrophy UK said: “It’s encouraging to see that there has been a slight increase in both children and adults receiving prescribed equipment within 18 weeks. But the figures highlight that more needs to be done to support people like the 110,000 adults and children in the UK living with a muscle wasting and weakening condition to ensure that they have the correct equipment.

For example, appropriate wheelchairs, with moulded seats and risers to meet the needs of those with muscle wasting conditions is still difficult to access. The charity’s free helpline has seen an increase in calls from those who are struggling to access appropriate equipment.”

  • Find out more about The Joseph Patrick Trust (JPT), the welfare fund within Muscular Dystrophy UK, which provides grants towards the costs of essential powered mobility equipment for children and adults with muscular dystrophy or a related neuromuscular condition
  • Read more about other funding for equipment or care needs
  • Contact our helpline for free information and support (Mon – Thurs 10am – 2pm)

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