Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Scooter Here Thursday

The scooter delivery people just called to ask if we'd be here tomorrow afternoon--it's the only time we won't be here all week! So said scooter will be here Thursday morning. Part of me wonders if I'd have been able to stick it out longer with work if I'd had the new scooter instead of the excruciating seating on the GoGo (alternate, excruciating walking)--it was supposed to be here around August 7. Another part of me wonders if I'd have quit if I realized my bad pain flare was from early pms, which didn't make me grouchy at all but which does increase my pain greatly. We'll see.


yanub said...

Do you really want to still be working? Or is a break what you needed at this point, regardless of when the scooter came in?

Tell me about the GoGo. What was the problem with it?

FridaWrites said...

No, I probably don't want to be working, esp. there and had considerd quitting before. But it will be difficult without the additional income, as little as I make. However, the current place has been extremely discriminatory toward PWDs, not just me, while being very two-faced about it, i.e., patting themselves on the back for changes that were legally required 18 years ago and that they have repeatedly denied to a number of people. I know people at other similar businesses don't have the same issues at other places.

Ooh, not many people have the patience to listen to my GoGo complaints. Here goes, willing victim ;) :
The GoGo is made for short people, and that meets the needs of a lot of smaller, older women but leaves out a lot of people. I'm 5'8", and it doesn't work for me very well--it does make it possible to be out at all sometimes, but I could be out much longer and get more done with better seating. Here's the "short"comings:
-the platform is too small for my long legs and so I can't get my legs even to 90 degrees--I actually need them extended in front of me a little.
-The seatback is also too short and at an odd angle for me, and not long enough (doesn't support enough of my legs, thus increasing the low spine pain).
-The cushion is too hard--and when I put my own cushion in it, that takes more of the back height and gives less support for my upper back.
-Armrests too low and too hard. Bad ergonomics plus
-Great difficulty sitting up straight in it because of ergonomics, thus more spine/back problems.
-I also have trouble getting it to go at all sometimes--it shorts out.
-The handlebar is too short for me.
-The underbody clearance is so low so the scooter catches on places in the sidewalk most other wheelchairs or scooters could take. It will take ADA compliant sidewalks, but not places that are not as level as dictated by ADA.
-Can't handle any gravel at all or even an almost flat transition onto grass. Stops.
-Has had difficulty getting enough traction on some flooring in stores so that it won't go.
-Has difficulty managing some door thresholds that are borderline ADA compliant.
-The basket is a little small and with little use starts to fall off.

It does have a really good turning radius and is nice and compact. My husband can lift it if needed to get me out of tight spots or to take in and out of a vehicle if we don't use the minivan. So it has some advantages.

All around, it's not a good buy, but what most people who need them have to get (most people purchase on medicare or medicaid). I think for a lot of people a first piece of equipment is a learning experience about your ergonomic needs. Seating for the Amigo can be adapted more (higher backrest, different kinds of cushions).

GoGo makes a newer one now that has a longer platform, but I might as well get the better one--even longer, plus better seating.

Really, it's mostly an indoor scooter only. We always knew it would be temporary, but we thought it would be even more temporary, that we'd have been able to get insurance to pay for one since we had substantial supporting documentation.

For really proper seating, I should be looking at power wheelchairs, as one of my friends has suggested. But at about 3x the cost of the scooter for what I need and not as much use as a full-time wheels user would need, I can't.

FridaWrites said...

And as it ages (7 months, average of 10 hours of use per week)--
-the seat rattles around on the post
-the back no longer sits up very straight--tilts back weirdly, which leaves me without enough support
-feels shaky/won't drive completely straight on many terrains, like a car with bad tire alignment
-I can't charge it myself since I can't pick up the batteries (too heavy for me, would risk a fracture). With a plug on top of the battery, the whole unit could be plugged in, as on the Amigo.
-Control hurts my thumb after a while; don't think I'll have that problem with the new one (a thinner switch)
-Tips too easily in rain or down steep slope. Have to be exceedingly careful.
-Horn is ridiculous (makes a weird beep) and is triggered too easily if you lean forward to get something from basket.
-Does not handle very steep hills very well
-Makes really loud beeping noises when it won't restart (often), thus drawing attention I really don't want

The more I write, the more I look forward to the new one!