From a view of the wheelchair users--a training report of the students on barrier-free environment in Sapporo

Asuna Arai, Yuriko Katsumata, Keita Konno, Kaori Ohta, Kotaro Ohtomo, Shoko Kimura, Motoko Takahashi, Tomoyuki Dobata, Kuriko Machida

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2 Scopus citations


This short report describes what we learned from our training session on the use of the wheelchair in the various parts of Sapporo City. The session was conducted in July 2000 as one of the public health field training programs for fourth-year medical students of Hokkaido University School of Medicine. We, as a set of 5 people with the wheelchair, actually toured the street, subways, big department stores, banks, and other public facilities and buildings to assess their social and physical environment in a context of barrier-free society, so that some suggestions may be given to the City for the development of an appropriate welfare system. We also evaluated people's attitudes to the wheelchair users. We learned that 1) it is not easy for the wheelchair users to move around; it's much more difficult than we thought; 2) there are a lot of barriers and obstacles in a social environment for the wheelchair users; 3) many people have not noticed these barriers. This training was very instrumental in terms of understanding the barrier-free environment from the view of wheelchair users. Comprehensive city planning is necessary to accommodate the various individuals and senior citizens with different handicaps. Furthermore, our own view of a barrier-free society must be changed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-110
Number of pages4
Journal[Hokkaido igaku zasshi] The Hokkaido journal of medical science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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