Through literature review conducted by the Standards Working Group of ISWP on wheelchair standards development, testing and wheelchair failure evidence from the field, several discrepancies were noted with wheelchair quality in less resourced settings. Wheelchair parts break in the first three to six months of use. Outdoor terrains, environmental variables and use conditions in less-resourced settings are known to affect product quality and current test methods in ISO 7176 do not test for such factors. Following these findings and recommendations from the World Health Organizations for development of additional rigorous standards, the Standards Working Group of the International Society of Wheelchair Professionals (ISWP) have developed new test methods.
ISWP wheelchair tests include caster durability testing, rolling resistance testing of wheels and casters, corrosion testing and whole chair testing. These tests evaluate products against a combination of several test factors that include corrosion exposure, wear from different surfaces, and impacts and loads as witnessed in the environments of less-resourced settings. ISWP encourages manufacturers, charitable organizations and service providers to test their products through ISWP tests for qualifying their products for use in less-resourced settings. Click on the links below to find out more about the specific ISWP tests.