Wheelchairs Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to get a wheelchair?

From your referral being received to provision of equipment we aim for less than 18 weeks.

If the equipment required is in stock we may be able to provide it quicker.

There is a longer wait on some specialist assessments and equipment, in particular when supplying equipment from multiple suppliers.

What happens if my condition changes and/or the wheelchair no longer meet my needs?

You can contact us directly or be referred by a health professional.

When you contact us please provide details of how your condition has changed and what aspects of your wheelchair no longer meet your needs. Following this we will review your case and agree an appropriate plan with you. 

What is a ‘Personal Wheelchair Budget’?

A Personal Wheelchair Budget [PWB] is a scheme offered to provide a wider choice for wheelchair users. At your assessment you will work with a clinician to identify what you want to achieve with your wheelchair. If the clinician identifies that a new wheelchair is required you will be prescribed an NHS wheelchair and be told the cost of this provision. This is your Personal Wheelchair Budget .You have the following choices on how to use your PWB:
NHS Provision (Notional)
Accept the wheelchair prescribed to meet your needs. The wheelchair will remain the property of the NHS.
Top-Up Alternative Wheelchair
You can upgrade to an alternative model of wheelchair within the NHS range. The wheelchair will remain the property of the NHS.

Top-Up Accessories
You can add additional features to the wheelchair provided with guidance of the clinician. The wheelchair  and any additional features will remain the property of the NHS.

Third Party PWB
You  can choose a model of wheelchair outside of  the NHS range, provided it meets your needs, from an independent mobility provider.

Could I have a tray for my wheelchair?

Trays are only provided in specific circumstances to improve someone’s sitting position or to enable independence with tasks at home. Trays are not designed to replace a suitable table.

Could I have a headrest?

Headrests are only provided for specific clinical reasons. Headrests are not provided solely for vehicle transportation, this is yours or the transport agencies responsibility. 

I have a private wheelchair; can the NHS provide me with a cushion?

Seat cushions can be provided for private wheelchairs following an assessment by us if you otherwise meet the provision criteria. A cushion cannot be provided if it would create a safety risk.

If I do not meet the criteria for wheelchair provision via the NHS, what can I do?

You may wish to hire or purchase equipment from The Red Cross or local mobility dealerships in your area.

How do I know my e-referral has been received by the Wheelchair Service?

All referrers will receive a confirmation email,  generated automatically when an eReferral is completed.  If a confirmation email is not received, the eReferral has not been fully completed and received by the Wheelchair Service eReferral system.

Contact Wheelchair & Special Seating Service, and Repair Service

Telephone all departments: 01174144900

Wheelchair Repairs Bristol, Bath, South Gloucestershire & North Somerset
Telephone: 0117 4140990

Wheelchair Repairs Cheltenham & Gloucester
Telephone: 0300 4217093

Out of Hours service for both areas: 07720 353990

Email: wheelchairrepairs@nbt.nhs.uk

Wheelchair & Special Seating
Email: wheelchairs@nbt.nhs.uk