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Legless man in surprise wheelchair reversal

The Local/dl · 23 Dec 2011, 08:38

Published: 23 Dec 2011 08:38 GMT+01:00

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Evert Stefansson, from Nyköping in eastern Sweden, had both his legs amputated following a battle with diabetes.

Having lost both legs and with failing eyesight, Stefansson had becoming increasingly dependent on his wife Siv.

The two were hoping that local health authorities would supply them with a so-called Permobile, a power wheelchair, that he could manoeuvre himself. 

Despite having lost his legs, Stefansson's initial application to local health authorities for the power wheelchair was nevertheless denied. 

“I was bitterly disappointed in the local authorities. I don’t feel I got the support I deserve,” Evert Stefansson told The Local at the time.

In rejecting Stefansson's request, the Sörmland County Council argued that it was “uncertain if the impairment was permanent”.

In the wake of the shocking news, Stefansson's wife went to the media to draw attention to what she considered to be an unjust decision.

“I got angry. It just isn’t right that he has worked all his life but now can’t do anything that he loves anymore. Not even go fishing,” she told The Local at the time.

Story continues below…

Less than a month later, the county council has done an about face and has now granted Stefansson a so-called a Permobile.

“We're thrilled today,” Siv Stefansson told the local Södermanlands Nyheter (DN) newspaper on Thursday.

“But it's weird that one has to scream so loud in order to get them to listen.”

The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:26 December 23, 2011 by Da Goat
And here I was patiently waiting for his legs to grow back again!
10:36 December 23, 2011 by Atlas
Quote: In rejecting Stefansson's request, the Sörmland County Council argued that it was "uncertain if the impairment was permanent".

Were they expecting his legs to grow!
10:37 December 23, 2011 by Puffin
@Da goat

Actually you are not far off - the guy had started the process of being fitted with prosthetic legs and usually the health authority wait for the outcome of this process - ie see what level of walking can be acheived with the physio and training programme befor assessing the level of disability that remains

When I was in school one of my teachers had prosthetic legs - but always walked himslef - he never used any type of wheelchair or mobility scooter
12:02 December 23, 2011 by Swedishmyth
Swedish public healthcare always offers you as little as they can get away with, which is little indeed given the lack of self-esteem in most Swedes. Most of the time it's worth pushing them in order to squeeze out a bit more service.
12:31 December 23, 2011 by gabeltoon
It seems that not enough information about this man's case has been reported here.What has been written is so misleading.Here in SCOTLAND we have the same thing happening.If you don't keep up with your complaints you don't get anywhere.I hope this man gets all the attention that is needed to get the health board to do there job correctly.
15:15 December 23, 2011 by Frobobbles
A surprise wheelchair reversal might end you up falling down a cliff
21:39 December 23, 2011 by David Warren
If this keeps up you might find people not being buried because their death may not be permanent.

My son has a prostetic leg the result of a motor cycle accident and still needs the relief of a wheel chair occasionally.

The original decision was strange.
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