Safety, Health and Wellbeing

Wheelchairs

Our role is to develop and assist in the implementation of the UWA safety, health and wellbeing programs in order to minimise the risk of injury, illness and property damage.

We provide consultancy and other services to promote best practice and legislative compliance in all University and related activities.

In assessing situations where the use of wheelchairs is appropriate, take into account the following issues.

  1. In the event of the wheelchair being used as a mobility aid in a first aid situation the client must first be assessed by the nominated first aid representative for that particular location. All relevant first aid precautions and assessments should be undertaken before the use of the wheelchair is considered. For medical emergencies phone security on 2222 (main Crawley Campus) or (+61 8) 6488 2222 (off campus)
  2. A UWA wheelchair should only be used if the client is able to transfer into the wheelchair independently. The only assistance required by the staff member supervising the transfer should be appropriate verbal prompts. In a first aid situation, if the person requiring the wheelchair is unable to transfer independently an ambulance should be called.
  3. If the client is reporting chest pain an ambulance should be called.
  4. If the client has sustained a head injury or a suspected neck/spine injury an ambulance should be called and the wheelchair not used.
  5. Only staff trained in the use of the wheelchair should assist clients with their transfers and with pushing the wheelchair.

Wheelchair locations

Wheelchairs have been provided in the following locations around campus for transport of injured or ill people.

Area Responsible Location Contact
Business School Main reception ground floor Marjory Harvey Ph: (+61 8) 6488 2780
Computer Science and Software Engineering, School of
Store room next to First Aid Room, 1st Floor   School Manager
Confucius Institute Ground Floor Sophie Xie Ph: (+61 8) 6488 6888
Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery Small room at the right of the entrance Donna Greenwood, Administration Officer Ph:6488 3977, or Front Gallery, Ph: (+61 8) 6488 3707
Reid Library Staff workroom, First Floor Felicity Renner, Reid Library, Ph: (+61 8) 6488 5323
J Robin Warren Library Seminar room Store Room ground floor Information Desk ground floor Ph: (+61 8) 6457 7570
Octagon Theatre Upstairs in FOH store room Front of House Staff Ph: (+61 8) 6488 7092 or John Doyle Ph: (+61 8) 6488 2439
Office of Development 1st Floor, Administration Building Wendy Cater Ph: (+61 8) 6488 4267
Physics First Aid Room John Moore Ph:(+61 8) 6488 2005, Dave McPhee Ph: (+61 8) 6488 3480 and Jay Jay Jegathesan, School Manager Ph: (+61 8) 6488 3480 or 0417 180 564
Podiatric Medicine Park Avenue Building Clinic Reception Ph: 6488 4522
Population Health Nedlands Campus Dief Alexander Ph: (+61 8) 6488 2994 or Reception Ph: (+61 8) 6488 1261
7 Fairway, cnr Cooper St  B2, O.T. store room HR Reception Ph: (+61 8) 6488 7481
University Club  Store room under main stairs in main foyer near reception Reception Ph: (+61 8) 6488 4285
University Theatres Winthrop Hall, Small Office, Front Foyer Front of House Staff Ph: (+61 8) 6488 7092 or John Doyle Ph: (+61 8) 6488 2439
UWA Sports Recreation Centre Store room Jessica Wedge, Finance Assistant Ph: (+61 8) 6488 2678, or Bruce Meakins, Executive Director Ph: (+61 8) 6488 2335

Important considerations

  • The paths leading to the Medical Centre are, in many places, uneven. A rough ride can aggravate a client’s condition thereby adding to their discomfort. This needs to be taken into consideration when deciding whether to take someone to the UWA Medical Centre or to call an ambulance.
  • The combined weight of wheelchair plus individual can be easily above 70 kilograms. Pushing the chair over an extended distance (and over rough ground) can therefore present risks. Only persons trained in the use of the wheelchair should push the chair. At least two members of staff should alternate pushing duties over distances of 30 metres or more.
  • Never hang bags or other objects on the back of the wheelchair as this can unbalance the chair and make it more liable to tip backwards.
  • The list of contact people is provided so that access to the wheelchair by another area can be facilitated. These people are not responsible for the collection, return or transfer of the injured person.
  • It is important that wheelchairs should be checked regularly and serviced by an approved repairer. Each school/section should also carry out regular maintenance checks to keep their wheelchair in safe working order.