Indian Institute of Technology (IIT-Madras) has a solution to every problem in today’s world. They have now launched India’s first indigenously designed standing wheelchair. The project, in association with Phoenix Medical Systems now enables a differently-abled person requiring a wheelchair to shift from sitting to standing position, and the other way around, independently and in a controlled manner.
The wheelchair named ‘Arise’ was launched in the presence of Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thawarchand Gehlot at the institute.
Union Minister Gehlot heaped praise on IIT-Madras for its initiative, and had also recalled the Prime Minister Narendra Modi government’s several welfare measures for the ‘divyang’, including establishing 5 national-level sophisticated sports centres for differently-abled sportspersons in various states of the country.
As per Sashi Kumar who is the Managing Director, Phoenix Medical Systems, testing partners for ‘Arise’ included NGOs, hospitals, rehabilitation centres, individual users and clinicians who offered inputs.
The device was conceptualised, designed and developed by the TTK Center for Rehabilitation Research and Device Development (R2D2). “Called Arise, the standing wheelchair was designed and developed by the TTK Center for Rehabilitation Research and Device Development (R2D2) at IIT Madras headed by Sujatha Srinivasan in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT Madras,” the official release stated.
It is also worth mentioning that the project also got massive support from foreign countries like the UK. “The commercialisation of the Standing Wheelchair technology was made possible through support from Wellcome, UK, through an ‘Affordable Healthcare in India’ Award, which brought together the research and manufacturing partners,” the release stated.