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Supplier Interview: Dale Thomas – a success story!

Supplier Interview: Dale Thomas – a success story!

Michelle L. Lange, OTR/L, ABDA, ATP/SMS

Dale Thomas is a supplier with National Seating and Mobility in Lexington, Kentucky. He is fairly new to this field, but certainly not to complex rehab equipment, having a young son who has cerebral palsy and uses wheelchair seating and mobility. Dale is a big fan of Dynamic Seating and agreed to talk with me by phone recently.

Dale Thomas, National Seating & Mobility

Dale Thomas, National Seating & Mobility

Dale, you recently shared a success story with Ted Ruckstuhl at Seating Dynamics. Can you tell me more?

Dale has been working with Haley who is 15 years old and has cerebral palsy and dystonia. “She moves all the time and it is worse if she is excited.” He recently recommended a new tilt in space manual wheelchair with a Seating Dynamics Dynamic Rocker Back Interface (DRBi), Dynamic Footrests and Dynamic Head Support Hardware with an Elan 4 point head pad. The new head support cups her head, providing a better head position. Haley can now move and she likes that! Before receiving dynamic seating, Haley constantly pushed against her seating system and these non-yielding surfaces led to increased muscle tone. The dynamic components move in response to these forces and her muscle tone has now decreased in the seating system as a result. In the past, Haley has broken “all kinds of stuff” on her wheelchair and seating system. The dynamic components are now absorbing these forces to prevent this damage. Before receiving Dynamic Seating, Haley experienced a lot of pain in her wheelchair. Now she can sit much longer and is happier. Haley states that her “body feels better” indicating reduced pain.

Dale, who are you using Dynamic Seating with?

Dales uses Dynamic Seating with clients who demonstrate high muscle tone in their extremities – clients who plant their feet and use that leverage to stand up in their wheelchairs. He also uses Dynamic Seating with clients who like to rock and seek out this movement.

How is Dynamic Seating funding in Kentucky?

Dale has had good success obtaining funding for Dynamic Seating components from Kentucky Medicaid and private insurance plans. He has several orders pending funding at this time and does not anticipate any issues. Great news!

What benefits are you seeing from use of Dynamic Seating?

Dale has noted decreased muscle tone, decreased leverage (which can lead to loss of posture and alignment with the seating surfaces), increased comfort / decreased pain, increased relaxation and even relief. “When the client can move, you can just see it on their face – they are relieved.” He has also noticed that clients tend to move less once they realize movement is possible.

Dale is up to a challenge and thrives on finding the optimal solution for a client. “I’m the guy who isn’t going to shy away from this,” he states when referring to very complex client scenarios. Our clients need a champion who will go the extra mile to meet their needs. Keep up the great work, Dale!

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