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How the Rise of Obesity in America is Increasing Demand for Bariatric Equipment for Travel and More


It’s a fact: 93 million Americans are overweight. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly one in three Americans is overweight. Another one-third is obese, meaning they are at least 20 percent heavier than their ideal body weight. Approximately one in 20 people is morbidly obese, or 50 to 100 percent above his/her ideal body weight.

Being overweight or obese increases the risk of acquiring serious medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, certain types of cancer, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, and much more. Carrying extra weight puts increased stress on the body, especially the bones/joints of the legs, making it difficult to walk. In addition, breathing problems such as sleep apnea and asthma can result from being overweight or obese.

In recent years, bariatric equipment has been further developed to accommodate the growing number of individuals who are overweight or obese, whether for medical and emergency services, everyday life mobility, or to enjoy travel.

What are hospitals, fire departments and other emergency services doing to accommodate individuals who are overweight or obese? They’re investing in bigger, stronger, bariatric equipment. Across the country, more and more hospitals are offering bigger wheelchairs, electronic lifts, stretchers, walkers, and patient privacy curtains; sturdier beds, floor-mounted toilets, larger bathrooms, and double wide chairs. They’re increasing the weight limit on CT scanners. Ambulances are being retrofitted with sturdier floorboards, automated stretchers that hold more weight, wider beds, ramps, removable hoists and more.

Regardless of their weight, or health problems they may have stemming from their weight, individuals who are overweight or obese need and want to travel, and require special equipment to do so. Maneuvering around a large cruise ship, theme park, convention center, or even the grocery store can be a great challenge for individuals who are overweight or obese. Plus, it’s very likely that they require special needs equipment for travel for other health issues, such as asthma, sleep apnea, etc.

To accommodate individuals who are overweight or obese and allow them to travel without barriers, Special Needs Group offers a wide range of high-quality, reliable special needs and bariatric equipment rentals. This includes:
• Wheelchair rentals accommodating individuals weighing up to 750 pounds

• Scooter rentals for those weighing up to 500 pounds

• Extra wide rollator rentals (walkers with a seat)

• Oxygen and oxygen equipment rentals

Everyone, regardless of their weight, should and does have the right to travel. Special Needs Group/Special Needs at Sea is making great strides in helping thousands of individuals with special needs, including those who are overweight or obese, realize their travel dreams. By offering bariatric equipment rentals, the company is allowing these individuals to comfortably enjoy exploring the world, without travel barriers.


May 18, 2011


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