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Case Study Barrier-free design of the access route for an orthopaedic mechanic


With its four employees, the company sells rehabilitation articles and owns an orthopaedic workshop in which technical assistive products are specially adapted to the disabilities of the customers. Due to a political decision, it is planned to locate commercial enterprises with emissions outside the inner city. With the designation, planning and realisation of the commercial area, the company was offered an appropriate building for rent.

Disability and functional limitation of the employee:

The man has a hip as well as a knee joint disease, a shortening of the right leg and a spinal column disease with spondylolisthesis. The illnesses lead to limitations in walking and climbing stairs. The man can still walk short distances, but in the foreseeable future he will be dependent on the constant use of a wheelchair. The GdB (degree of disability) is 80. The severely disabled person's certificate bears the mark G.

Training and job:

The man is a trained orthopaedic mechanic and bandagist and has been working for his employer for several years.

Work task:

The man manufactures and fits assistive products, such as prostheses or wheelchairs. He also maintains and repairs orthopedic or rehabilitation products.

Workplace and working environment (actual state):
The employee with a walking disability has considerable problems reaching his workplace on the top floor of the new building due to the company's move to the new premises, as there is no lift.

Workplace and working environment (target state):

In order for the employee to be able to reach his workplace in the new premises independently without any problems, a stair lift with a platform (inclined lift) must be installed in the stairwell. Due to the small staircase, it is not possible to install a vertical lift. Therefore, the installation of a stair lift with platform is the only possibility for the disabled employee to reach the upper floor or his workplace. The lift has a fully automatic folding platform that can be operated at the push of a button. It is also equipped with a fall protection device. The employee can also use it later with a wheelchair.

Assistive products used:

Further Information

The design suitable for disabled people was funded by the Integration Office.

ICF Items

Reference Number:


Last Update: 5 May 2009