An Assistive Powered Wheelchair: Stage 2 Trial - Powered Wheelchair User Evaluation of an Obstacle Alerting System. A Non-interventional Study

Study Purpose:

Preliminary evaluation of an obstacle alerting system to enhance the user's independent mobility by improving their confidence to drive and their safety in driving a powered wheelchair.

Study Status:

Not recruiting


Multiple Sclerosis , Stroke , Cystic Fibrosis , Motor Neurone Disease , Craniocerebral Trauma , Guillain-Barre Syndrome

Study Type:


Type of Intervention:


Intervention Name:






Study Chair(s)/Principal Investigator(s):

Mohamed Sakel, MD, East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust ID:


Neals Affiliated?


Coordinating Center Contact Information

Full Study Summary:

Many powered wheelchair users find that collision free driving presents a significant challenge to confident and safe driving. In some cases so much so that the user will not drive their chair in some environments.

Interviews with users in the EDUCAT project confirmed that users had problems driving safely and confidently in a confined space, passing through doorways or down narrow corridors and when reversing.

Therefore the goal of this stage of the project is to improve the quality of life of the powered chair user by developing an obstacle alerting system which will help improve their confidence and safety in driving.

This was to be achieved by asking expert users to provide feedback on the impact and usefulness of providing information about the presence and location of obstacles in the vicinity of their powered wheelchair.

There are two aspects to this.

1. User assessment of the usefulness of the obstacle alerting feedback. This will include user evaluation of the value of the different modes of feedback - audio, visual and haptic - and how best to adapt these to the range of driving environments and driving speeds. And what level of control the user requires to select and deselect these options.

2. Monitoring the user's driving patterns with and without obstacle alerting -using the Stage 1 recording device.

The analysis of this data, and feedback from the Users and carers will inform the development and design of the obstacle alerting system.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic the trial could not be carried out with powered wheel-chair users participating as they represented a clinically vulnerable part of the population. The trial was, therefore, adapted and carried out with adult non-wheelchair users.

Study Sponsor:

East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust

Estimated Enrollment:


Estimated Study Start Date:

03 / 29 / 2021

Estimated Study Completion Date:

08 / 31 / 2021

Posting Last Modified Date:

08 / 01 / 2022

Date Study Added to

03 / 23 / 2022

Minimum Age:

18 Years

Maximum Age:

90 Years

Inclusion Criteria:

1. Adults who are not wheelchair users.

2. Willing and able to provide a valid consent.

3. Able to participate in interviews aided or unaided using preferred method of communication.

4. Willing to drive a powered chair.

Exclusion Criteria:

1. Lacks capacity to consent

East Kent Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Canterbury, Kent CT1 3NG
United Kingdom