Anna Tidley’s Corner: Featherweight Wheelchairs 101 FAQ – Episode 3


Hello and welcome to another episode of Anna Tidley’s Corner, where we discuss everything related to wheelchairs and mobility. Today, we’re diving into some of the most frequently asked questions about featherweight wheelchairs, Medicare, and accessories. Let’s get started!

Are wheelchair accessories covered by Medicare?

Medicare does cover certain wheelchair accessories, but it largely depends on the type of accessory and its medical necessity. Items like seat cushions, armrests, and positioning belts may be covered if prescribed by a healthcare provider.

When should a wheelchair be replaced?

The lifespan of a wheelchair varies depending on its type and usage. However, a wheelchair should be replaced when it shows signs of wear and tear that affect its functionality or safety, such as broken wheels, loose parts, or compromised structural integrity.

How long does Medicare pay for a wheelchair?

Medicare typically covers the cost of a wheelchair for a rental period of up to 13 months. After that, if you still need the wheelchair, you may have the option to purchase it.

How much will Medicare pay to purchase a wheelchair?

Medicare usually covers 80% of the approved amount for the wheelchair. The remaining 20% is generally the beneficiary’s responsibility unless they have supplemental insurance.

How long does it take for Medicare to approve a wheelchair?

The approval process can take a few weeks to a few months, depending on factors like medical necessity documentation and the type of wheelchair requested.

What’s the difference between a lightweight wheelchair and a standard wheelchair?

Lightweight wheelchairs are generally easier to maneuver and transport, weighing 25 to 35 pounds. Standard wheelchairs, on the other hand, can weigh up to 50 pounds and may not be as portable.

How heavy is the lightest wheelchair?

The lightest wheelchairs on the market can weigh as little as 15 pounds, making them ideal for travel and quick mobility.

What is the difference between a lightweight wheelchair and a transport chair?

A lightweight wheelchair is designed for self-propulsion, whereas a transport chair is meant to be pushed by a caregiver. Transport chairs usually lack large rear wheels, making them less suitable for self-propulsion.

How do you put a walking foot on a featherweight?

To attach a walking foot to a featherweight wheelchair, first, ensure the wheelchair is stable. Then, align the walking foot with the attachment point and secure it using the provided hardware. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for specific guidance.

When would a lightweight folding wheelchair be used for?

A lightweight folding wheelchair is ideal for situations requiring easy transport and storage, such as travel, outings, or when space is limited.

That wraps up this episode of Anna Tidley’s Corner. If you have more questions, feel free to drop them in the comments below. 

Until next time, stay mobile and empowered!