The Client was a young lady in her mid thirties who had moved into an apartment with assisted living approximately one year earlier. She has M.S. and has limited leg length and up until that time had been cared for at home by her parents.
She had great difficulty in carrying food, plates and mugs from kitchen to the dining room since they would slide from her lap. It was therefore necessary for a carer to help her, particularly at mealtimes.This was a major set-back in her need for independent living and she was very distressed that her carpet was being damaged and her new home being spoiled.
It was important that any new surface should be compatible in height with other work surfaces such as the dining table and her writing desk. Also, that any additions to the chair should be light in weight and removable and portable.
The solution was to extend the wheelchair arms with slide-on box section arms which were very stable and a snug fit.
A new tray, the overall width of the chair, was made to securely interlock with arms, have a wipe-down surface and lips around the edge.
The arms and tray could be secured and removed by the client so they could be carried and stowed away by her.
The benefits far exceeded the objective of providing a means of carrying food and drink within her apartment; the tray served as a firm work surface for many other purposes but the most significant spin-off was that she was able to take her food and hobbies into the communal areas and this opened up a social life she did not have before.