New Personal Wheelchair Budgets

Care Minister Caroline Dinenage has changed the law, effective from 2 December 2019, to allow 100,000 more people using wheelchairs to get a personal health budget (personal wheelchair budget).

This extension of legal rights will give many more people independence, a say in how they’re cared for, improving their experiences while ensuring value for money for taxpayers.

This is an important step in the NHS Long Term Plan’s ambition to see personalised care become the norm for thousands more across the country.

The Department for Health and Social Care has said more than 70,000 people are already benefitting from the scheme.

A personal wheelchair budget can be spent on a specially-adapted wheelchair to meet a person’s care needs.

Surrey CCGs in conjunction with NHS England are working closely with the Wheelchair Services to develop a Personal Wheelchair Budget offer to replace the current Voucher Scheme.

Personal Wheelchair Budgets are available for some wheelchair service clients to provide a greater choice of wheelchairs.


Under the new system wheelchair users will have three options:


1. Notional Personal Wheelchair Budget (standard NHS provision)

This means the provision of a wheelchair which will meet an individuals identified needs.


2. Notional Personal Wheelchair Budget with contribution

This option allows an individual or another agency (such as a voluntary or charitable organisation) to contribute their personal budget towards an NHS wheelchair or add additional features.


3. Third Party Personal Wheelchair Budget

This allows an individual to use their personal budget as a contribution to buying a wheelchair from an independent retailer outside of the NHS. This is only available if the wheelchair is deemed clinically appropriate following a discussion with a Wheelchair Therapist.


Case study - Martin

Martin was able to access a seat riser through his personal wheelchair budget, negating the need for local services to make kitchen adaptations. This made financial sense, and made sense for Martin, who can now get out and about and lead his life as he wants to. Health and Social Care services worked together to enable more flexible use of resources, something which would not have been possible before personal wheelchair budgets. The net effect benefited everyone.

Martin said: “There are not only physical advantages of having the right chair and being able to do more independently. The mental lift of a little independence cannot be ignored.”


For more information on Personal Wheelchair Budgets, visit