||Volume 3, Number 2 Spring-Summer,
Making Your Life A Little Easier - Adapting Your Chairs – At Home, and On the Road
Having difficulty getting out of that one comfortable chair? Or any chair for that matter? Sometimes, you may be thinking “If I could only get a little boost, I know I could get up more easily.” There are many ways to do transfers from one surface to another (bed to chair, chair to tub, chair to toilet, etc.). However, transfers out of recliners are usually difficult, and can put a strain on the caretaker’s back. So I often recommend a device called an Uplift Assist.
The Uplift Assist is a device that gives you a boost by elevating the seat with a lever or button. This enables you to use your own power to stand the rest of the way. If you are unable to stand on your own power, then this device will not be of value to you.
Uplift Assist can be purchased in two ways: Either as part of a recliner, or by itself. If you buy the entire chair, you are restricted to that chair. Medicare will reimburse only for the cost of the seat mechanism (about $160). You might want to check with the regulations of your private insurance company before you purchase anything. If purchased separately, the Uplift Assist lists for $160. Medicare should cover this item if your doctor and therapist can document medical necessity. There are benefits to buying this mechanism alone; the device is now portable, and since it is lightweight, it can be brought along when you visit friends or leave the house.
You can purchase the Uplift Assist either from a large “home care” store, or directly from the manufacturer. Ask to try out the Assist before you buy. If this is not possible, ask for a catalog and order that way. If you have Medicare, you are best off getting a letter of medical necessity first, before paying for anything.
The following are some companies that stock either the entire chair or just the device: Daylight Tech (800-387-0896) and Golden Technology (800-624-6374).
Making Your Life A Little Easier is a regular feature in this Newsletter. If you have any suggestions or concerns, or would like a specific topic discussed that poses difficulty for you, send your suggestions to me at the above address.