Amputee awareness week #6 The cost of equipment

Unless you are physically disabled yourself, you will have absolutely no clue how expensive it is to be an amputee. What your healthcare system offers you also varies vastly from country to country. Some have to remortgage their house to be able to afford it. This is very common indeed.

What you see in this photo is most of the equipment I currently use.

GREY LINER ON THE CHAIR (that I wear next to my skin – the bottom layer of things to wear the leg) $2500 each. They last about 6 months. I have three of these at the moment. 2 for day to day which I clean and alternate daily, then one for the bike leg specifically.

BLACK CRUTCHES (sidestix brand, carbon-fibre) $2000+ they come with a range of different feet for different surfaces, all at an additional cost

THE WHEELCHAIR (Brand – permobil) $17,000

That’s just the equipment prices that I DO KNOW. Then there’s the rest of the stuff in this picture.

I would estimate that a walking leg (bear in mind mine has a hydraulic ankle that specifically came from the UK) would cost around $10,000-$15,000. The pink limb cover – an additional $1000.

Quite frankly, the price of stuff is frightening. I would hate to think what the actual cost is of making a new socket each time I need one (I’m now on #10 and still going).

Being disabled is no joke and neither is the cost of it. It’s not fair that the medical system is so biased and unbalanced. It’s not fair that in some countries you’re sweet as, whereas in others you have to sell your car to buy a leg.

Then there’s the additional costs associated with getting around.. taxis cost more if you’re in a wheelchair. Some public transport just isn’t accessible at all. Some cars aren’t either. Getting the picture? ?

So, the next time you go to say to someone.. oh you’re lucky that you get… stop right there and eat your words. There is no luck in this at all my friend. We are all at the mercy of a country’s medical system, along with all the challenges that also poses, many of which are the same obstacles that got us here in the first place.

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