- Lift chair
Lift chairs are chairs that feature a powered lifting mechanism that pushes the entire chair up from its base, allowing the user to easily move to a standing position.
"Lift chairs can be a boon to the
elderly, infirm or disabled. Along with stairliftsand scooters they can do wonders for comfort, mobilityand increased independence. Lift chairs can be relatively inexpensive but as with everything, the price you are prepared to pay will affect the number and the sophistication level of the features available. These lift chairs have a hidden hazard of entrapment. The danger lies when an unsuspecting child or pet can get crushed in the vice like grip of the frame and the motor. According to the Washington based Safety Forum a 15-month old boy who was killed in 1994 in Guymon, Oklahoma, when his two-year old sister was operating the hand switch on a lift chair and accidentally lowered it onto the toddler's head, trapping him between the upholstered section of the chair and the steel frame.On June 4, 2000, the British publication, News of the World, reported the death of eight year old Lea Entwistle from Manchester England who was choked to death by his grandmother's orthopedic chair. He became trapped while playing under the chair's electrically operated lifting and reclining mechanism. Following the UK death a product safety standard was issued in order to remove the risk of injury or death from this type of chair (BS 8474). However, few UK manufacturers have made any attempt to meet the safety standard. This is despite the possibility of a jail sentence for the non compliant manufacturer should a further accident occur. New York stock exchange listed US manufacturer La-Z-Boy has recently modified its entire lift and recline chair line to match the UK safety standard in advance of the issuing of a United States Standard.There are also lifting cushions available on the market as a cost alternative to the more expensive lift chair or in addition to the traditional lift chair. Products like the UPEASY or Uplift power seat or manual seat can adapt to any stable seating surface but the operator must be aware of the potential hazards. These products can lift anyone up to 350lbs but may be unstable if not positioned correctly and not used on an appropriate seat. Most lift chairs will work with weights up to 375-450 pounds, although some can handle up to 700 lbs. A two position lift chair has a lift position and a slight recline position: as the user reclines in a two position lift chair, his back & thighs will stay at about 90 degrees; they do not recline for sleeping. A three position lift chair will recline to about 135 degrees, which allows most people to sleep. An infinite position lift chair allows the chair to go fully flat, and the back and the feet to move independently. It sometimes allows the Trendelenburg position, with the feet above the heart. Medicare will allow a $300 credit towards the lift mechanism on lift chairs. Lift chairs start around $400 for a simple lift only chair and can exceed $2000 for a luxury full leather chair with heat and massage.=Varieties=""'There are several varieties of lift chairs:
* 2-position lift chairs have 2 recline positions: straight, and "TV recline", which is leaned slightly back for reading, relaxing or watching television.
* 3-position lift chairs have 3 recline positions: straight, TV recline and "full recline".
* Infinite position lift chairs have independently operated back and leg movement for an unlimited number of recline positions from straight up to "sleep recline," which is all the way flat like a bed. Some manufacturers offer a mattress for chairs with this recline option.
The leading manufacturers of lift chairs are Pride Mobility, Golden Technologies, Medlift, Action Lift Chair (ALC, Inc) and Nex [Idea] .
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