Wheelchair Training FOUNDATION LEVEL for Occupational Therapists



To provide a post-graduate clinical training programme on standard manual wheelchairs for Occupational Therapists

Learning Outcomes

  • To improve the qualified therapist’s knowledge and understanding of the principles of wheelchair mobility and seating, pressure care and postural care.
  • To increase awareness of legislative issues and professional responsibilities in relation to wheelchair provision.
  • To enable the therapist to complete a comprehensive assessment for mobility equipment.
  • To equip qualified therapists with the required clinical skills to competently prescribe wheelchairs and associated products to meet the various needs of clients, including basic postural support and appropriate pressure care.
  • To provide therapists with the skills and knowledge to impart basic information and training to wheelchair users on ergonomic propulsion and wheelchair safety issues.
  • To increase therapists’ awareness of measures to ensure the safe transportation of users in their wheelchairs.
  • To develop knowledge and skills on standard wheelchair equipment available on the Regional Disablement Services (RDS) contract.
  • To provide information on operational procedures at local level and in relation to RDS and the Approved Repairer (AR) service.
  • To ensure equity in professional practice and provision to clients within wheelchair services in Northern Ireland.


  • Occupational Therapists who prescribe wheelchairs for people with non-complex needs.
  • Participants must be qualified Occupational Therapists with little experience in the field of wheelchair assessment, prescription and provision.


A combination of styles will be adopted in the delivery of this one-day course.  These include lectures, practical sessions, audience participation in product exploration, and discussion with involvement from wheelchair service users.

Course Tutor: Emma Regan BEM, Regional Clinical Specialist OT:

Wheelchair Training (NI)

Assisted by: Wheelchair Service User

Please note places will not be allocted until after the closing date.  You will be notified of the outcome of your application via email.

Additional Information

  • Should you have a disability, please inform the training OT (Emma Regan: emma.regan@belfasttrust.hscni.net ) so we can make suitable arrangements to support both your participation and learning. Your needs will not be disclosed to other participants and we will endeavour to meet them.
  • There is no ATM available on site at MPH.
  • Hospital canteen, and shop are available for lunch however you are welcome to bring a packed lunch.
  • Registration opens at 9:15am and the course finishes at 4:15pm.

Key Areas Covered:

  • Regional Health Service processes for the provision of wheelchairs, including the Criteria for Wheelchair Provision, pathways and relationships within wheelchair services and procedures for ordering and ensuring completion of wheelchair hand-over to the client.
  • Assessment of the client’s needs including: individual physical dimensions, posture and positioning, functional requirements, transfer methods, environmental factors. (indoor and outdoor), wheelchair transportation needs and ergonomic considerations
  • Assessment of the needs of the wheelchair user’s carers and family members, in terms of assisting the wheelchair user and managing the wheelchair equipment.
  • Creating an individual wheelchair prescription according to assessment information.
  • Exploring some common problems and mistakes which can be made with wheelchair prescriptions.
  • Observation and identification of common postural changes, how they develop and can affect wheelchair prescription and outcomes of the client.
  • Learning about the relationship between posture, positioning and pressure distribution, including the need to investigate the client’s positioning throughout the day and night to identify influences on postural change and intervene to prevent deterioration.
  • Introduction to the range and hierarchy of pressure care cushions and their properties in relation to client needs for pressure care and pelvic positioning.
  • Introduction to the range of standard manual wheelchairs on the Regional Wheelchair Contract: their characteristics, configuration options, variety of available accessories and clinical applicability to client’s and carer’s needs.
  • Understanding postural belts and harnesses and issues relating to perceived restraint of the client.
  • Awareness of wheelchair stability and risk management on slopes and cambers.
  • Introduction to best practice in the transportation of wheelchair transportation and risk assessment for transportation.
  • Introduction to ergonomic wheelchair propulsion for the manual wheelchair user.



Please note you will be informed in advance if there is a direct cost to you or your organisation for your attendance at this programme.

Back to Top for Course Dates

Sorry, there are currently no further dates scheduled for this programme. However, if you would like you may register your interest.