HuffPost What's Working Honor Roll: An Ingenious Invention Is Getting Disabled People Back On Their Feet

Cole Galloway designed a harness to help survivors of brain injurie get mobile again.

As journalists, we dutifully report on what's going wrong, from scandals and corruption to natural disasters and social problems. But far too often the media fails to show the whole picture, neglecting to tell the stories of what is working. From scientific breakthroughs to successful crime-reduction initiatives, the What’s Working Honor Roll highlights some of the best reporting and analysis, from a range of media outlets, on all the ways people are working toward solutions to some of our greatest challenges.  

Cole Galloway, a professor at the University of Delaware, has developed a harness that helps physically impaired patients move around a room on tracks affixed to the ceiling. The harness system is made out of low-tech material such as aluminum and steel bars, and allows the user a full range of mobility within 50 feet. What is it that makes Galloway's invention so unique? For starters, the first prototype is in a cafe, where the patient is able to serve customers, raising hope that it could be used in other real-world settings.

“We’ve spent hundreds of millions on rehabilitative robotics, but very few, if any, have ever jumped out of the lab and into the community," Galloway told NationSwell. "That’s how difficult it is to design rehab technology for the real world from within the traditional lab.”

Since the harness support system could be installed anywhere, Galloway is hopeful that it could aide others with mobility problems such as children with developmental disabilities or the elderly. 

“I feel comfortable and liberated because I’m secure and protected, and I don’t have to worry about falling,” Anne Dunlap, a car crash survivor who sustained severe brain injury, told the Newark Post.  


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