Ray Bogdan, a gentleman of 50+ years living with Cerebral Palsy, requires the use of a motorized transport to maintain his independence. Previously, he has been able to use an electric scooter to suit his transportation needs, and a manual wheelchair for moving around his home. However, in the time that he has worked with Abilities United ILS, his scooter has been in and out of the shop frequently, and is clearly no longer able to suit his needs. So, Wheelchairs of San Mateo initiated a request for Ray to receive a new, electric wheelchair, so that he may maintain his independence and continue to enjoy his outdoor excursions without the constant and necessary presence of support services.
One of Ray’s ILS goals is to improve his ability to utilize and work with his support services, he and I made a series of phone calls, gathering and delivering information necessary to expedite this process. Eventually it came to a point where the Health Plan of San Mateo was uncertain if Ray qualified for this new wheelchair, as they had recently covered the purchase of his manual wheelchair.
It became necessary for ILS to advocate formally and directly for Ray, expressing his needs in a detailed and comprehensive letter that would illustrate the multitude of reasons Ray absolutely required this motorized wheelchair, and how a manual wheelchair would not suffice. An important focus of this letter was the progressively debilitating nature of his condition, and the increasing need he has for assisted mobility, out in the community and also in his own home.
The request was authorized! The doctors reviewing the case realized that the progressive debilitation of Ray’s condition indeed warranted a more accessible mobility device. On Friday, August 12, Ray’s new wheelchair (he calls it the Bently) arrived at his home in San Mateo. I saw him the following Wednesday, and he was showing off all the cool new tricks it could do, and had a smile clear across his face. I can’t recall a time I’ve seen him happier, the chair is a dramatic improvement on his old scooter and is going to be essential in Ray’s continued involvement in his Downtown San Mateo community.

Submitted by Drew Thorne
ILS Instructor