Rolling Without Limits

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Wheelchairs for All
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Wheelchairs for All

A discussionvhas been going on here about disability rights in the United States, Canada, and Great Britain, but what about other countries across the world, especially third-world countries? We need more rights. I attest to that, and am one of the many witnesses than can testify about the lack of rights. Others who are in worse conditions, however, have much more to complain about.

I am currently living in a city where the population knows a large divide: there are the elites, and there are the poor neighborhoods. There are some middle-class neighborhoods in Cartagena, Colombia, but not many. This is a common problem across the world, of course. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. But in some places, the difference is striking.

In Colombia, the lack of wheelchairs is far greater than other locations, but not for the amount of money per se. Although this is often an issue, there are countries where the population is in much dier need for financial support, yet it know less mobility problems. Why is that? Well, it is a very little known fact, that Colombia’s forty-something-year war, has left a great many incapacitated, and not just the soldiers fighting. This country is filled with landmines. As a matter of fact, it is the country in the Americas with the highest number of landmines, and ranks third on the international level. Yet, it is a country that is not receiving sufficient aid on the matter. On the contrary--the Americans only send in more soldiers, on top of the three enemy groups here already fighting endlessly (guerilla, military and para-military) to add to the bloodbath. Then, there are the regular causes of disability: disease, birth defects and accidents. The need is tremendous.

At this point, across the world, there are over one hundred million people who need a wheelchair and cannot have one, for lack of supply, or lack of money to purchase it. Without them, people cannot go to school, to work, out with friends and family, or church. In these countries, they rely on family and friends to carry them around.

The situation needs to change. In the case of Colombians, informing people of the corruption related to drugs, which fuels this never-ending war, would be a great help. Please pass the message around.



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  1. pftsusan
    Great article. In the US the cheaper wheelchairs are now covered by Medicare and Medicaid. But not the better ones. Those you still have to pay for out of pocket. In some cases the first aide will give you a better wheelchair. It's that your remaining family members have to return it to them, after you passed.
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    1. SignLanguage
      Better to return it after the patient passed away then to not have one at all! Thanks!
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  2. Lil Nana
    Lil Nana
    Voted...great blog!
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  3. Admin
    Thanks Sign Language, for casting light on an issue that needs it.
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    1. SignLanguage
      You're welcome!
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  4. Rene
    Voted :)
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  5. Broken English
    Broken English
    Voted. Very thought-provoking, I had no idea the situation was this bad in Colombia. I have shared this on Facebook and Twitter. Come and check out my latest blog, A Brief History of Stephen Hawking, when you get a chance. :-)
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  6. harley52
    There are already alot of Power Assist for manual wheelchairs out there, But hands down The Smart Drive by Max Mobility is the best if You are an independent wheeler. It is really easy to put on and take off, and not heavy, it is just one extra step at taking Your chair apart when putting it in Your car, or taking it out. You might have already heard of the Smart Drive, I have one, and it is the best invention that I have seen for a manual wheelchair in 30 years of wheeling, and living in New Hampshire with alot of hills it increases My wheeling independence 100%. If You haven't heard of the Smart Drive, goggle Max Mobility, or Smart Drive, because I don't have the website right on hand now, but they have a couple videos on how it operates, and how easy it is to use and take on and of Your chair! Talk to You Soon Matt, and let Me know when You want to swap falling out of My chair stories? Thanks, Alan.................
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