Regular wheelchairs are exhausting to push, hard to use off-road, tricky to fix, and like all medical devices, too expensive. In developing countries, many people with disabilities are trapped at home, unable to attend work or school. In the United States, many riders are stuck on the pavement: their regular wheelchairs can’t keep up.
The World Health Organization estimates that over 65 million people in the developing world need an appropriate wheelchair. Over 75% of them live in rural areas, where standard wheelchairs just don’t work: they’re hard to push, they break easily, and they can’t be repaired locally. As students in the MIT Mobility Lab, we spent years working with wheelchair riders, experts, and manufacturers from around the developing world to reinvent the wheelchair.
Grotmol Solutions provided seed financing to GRIT in 2015.