Equipment and Modification Services definitions

Find definitions of terms frequently used in Equipment and Modification Services (EMS).



Additional items which are available 'off the shelf' and can be attached to the base equipment item which has been funded by Whaikaha.

The accessory (or modified accessory) is completely removable and reversible so the base equipment is able to be reissued for another person. It has the purpose of enhancing the functionality of the base equipment item for a person’s specific individual need and will not function as a stand-alone item.


  • Head rests
  • Pelvic positioning belts
  • Ankle huggers
  • Spoke guards
  • Specialised arm rests
  • Trays
  • Laterals
  • Chest harnesses

Band 1 Equipment


Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People Band 1 Equipment ('Band 1 Equipment') is equipment which has been selected following a formal tender process.

Criteria for selection in Band 1 are that items:

  • meet the needs of a wide range and large number of disabled people, and
  • are low cost (generally less than $1,000 excl. GST), and
  • are durable and the majority are able to be reissued in a cost-effective way.

Equipment is able to be supplied at the lowest possible price, resulting in greater value for money. Many Band 1 Equipment items could be self-purchased in regular retail stores and there is generally a low consequence of risk in relation to its provision.

Not all low-cost items will be included in Band 1 Equipment. Items that are low cost and rarely requested but that have not been selected through a tender process will be subject to the Prioritisation Tool. All other items will be considered to be in Band 3 (currently known as Complex).


  • Personal hygiene equipment such as bath boards
  • Standard shower commodes and over toilet frames
  • Standard walking frames
  • Chair raisers
  • Standard pressure cushions
  • Kitchen trolleys

Band 2 Equipment


Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People Band 2 Equipment (‘Band 2 Equipment’) is equipment which has been selected through formal procurement arrangements. Criteria for selection in Band 2 are that items:

  • do not have high specifications or features and are not complex to use or customised for a person, and
  • generally cost less than $3,000 (excl. GST), and
  • are regularly requested.


  • Adjustable beds
  • Hoists
  • Standing frames
  • Walking frames (bariatric, paediatric or non-standard)
  • Wheelchairs (standard self-propelling or transit)

Band 3 Equipment


Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People Band 3 Equipment (‘Band 3 Equipment’) is equipment which has been selected through formal procurement arrangements (including direct purchase for one-off items).

Criteria for selection in Band 3 are that items meet one or more of the following:

  • are complex and/or have high specifications or features
  • may be customised and individualised
  • are high cost (generally $3,000 or more)
  • are supplied in low volumes, irrespective of their cost
  • require an EMS Assessor to have a higher skill level and experience
  • result in a higher consequence of risk to a person following an inappropriate recommendation by an EMS Assessor.


  • Power wheelchairs
  • Customised standing frames
  • Highly specialised pressure care equipment
  • Communication devices with high specifications
  • Customised or individualised seating systems

Equipment package


Items of equipment within the same area of accreditation which, when combined, form one solution for the person to meet their specific needs.


  • Power wheelchair, tray and seating system
  • Communication device, mounting system and switch

Like for like replacement


Like for like replacement means that the same fit, form and function of the equipment item needs to be sought – it does not indicate that the exact make and model needs to be supplied. 

When an equipment item is considered to be beyond economic repair, and this item is still meeting the person’s needs, a replacement can be requested by either the person or the EMS Assessor.

If the equipment item has been determined as being beyond economic repair and it no longer meets the person’s needs, a reassessment from an EMS Assessor is required, and the Prioritisation Tool must be completed (for Band 2 and Band 3 Equipment) before a replacement item can be provided.

If an equipment item is not considered beyond economic repair but this item no longer meets the person’s needs (eg, where a child has outgrown a wheelchair), a reassessment by an EMS Assessor is required before replacement equipment can be provided. In this instance, the Prioritisation Tool would be used as it is no longer Like for Like replacement.


  • Manual wheelchair
  • Hoist

Modifications to equipment


The accessory itself can be modified to meet a specific need or the modifications completed without having any impact on the base equipment item. It may be where customisation is required to an existing equipment item that is not achievable through the normal methods of adjustments available on that piece of equipment. The modification is completely removable or reversible so the base equipment item is able to be reissued for another person.


  • A leg hanger being added to a wheelchair or commode to accommodate for wind-sweeping
  • A custom-made seat for a commode chair
  • A customised lateral for a wheelchair or standing frame