By Shay Moser
Photos by Kimberly Carrillo
Simple activities such as getting in and out of bed or the recliner, bathing, climbing stairs, and walking can be challenging for seniors and those with orthopedic or neuromuscular impairments. For some, these activities can also be a safety hazard. However, mobility and fall prevention devices can facilitate safe movement around the house and away from home.
That’s how Mobility Plus North Scottsdale helps. As Arizona’s first such franchise in the state opened in the summer of 2020 by Scott and Lara Vineyard, its industry-leading products include scooters, power wheelchairs, ramps, lift chairs, stair lifts, pool lifts, vehicle lifts, pool therapy equipment, walkers, wheelchairs, hospital beds, and fall prevention products. Customers can buy or rent mobility devices and depend on Mobility Plus North Scottsdale to install and repair their equipment. The nationwide franchise has been providing mobility solutions for aging Americans, people with disabilities, and veterans since 2007.
“I reached a point in my career where I was looking for something more fulfilling,” says Scott. “I wanted to give back to the community and do something more important than preparing a PowerPoint presentation for the next board meeting. I wanted to help improve people’s lives.”
Scott and Lara also know firsthand the struggles of caring for loved ones who are mobility impaired.
“Having taken care of my grandfather through his dialysis and my father through Alzheimer’s, I understand how challenging and difficult it is for families going through these journeys,” says Lara.
Combining skills for mobility consulting
Ready for a career change and being on the other side of caring for family, the Vineyards saw the opportunity to take an existing industry model, add customer education, and improve the customer experience.
“I wanted to turn the mobility industry model on its head,” explains Scott, “and provide mobility and fall prevention products by teaming with professionals in the community who also care about helping others.”
With corporate finance and entrepreneurial marketing backgrounds, Scott and Lara became a service-oriented mobility consulting team. And they brought on other team members who are just as passionate about changing the industry. All Mobility Plus North Scottsdale associates have been caregivers and understand the complexity of care and navigating the medical system while being compassionate and understanding.
Scott is a recognized finance and strategy leader with 23-plus years of experience in budgeting, mergers and acquisitions, financial analysis, strategy, and collaboration to improve company processes, reporting, and performance in diverse industries. Lara is a business entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in digital marketing — from website, email, and logo design to online communication and branding.
Education first, not sales
Three and a half years into running Mobility Plus North Scottsdale, the Vineyards have continued to offer a better method to help customers and their caregivers choose the right mobility and fall-prevention devices.
“Our focus is not and never has been on sales,” says Lara. “We’re not salespeople, we’re not going to make an easy sale of an unsuitable product just because a customer comes in and says, ‘This is what I want.’ Instead, we educate them on all the options. We spend time with people and their caregivers to help determine what will support them best.”
Scott says their team is all about education. For instance, they get to know customers. Then, based on what they learn about their lifestyle and where they want to go, they offer options for what may be helpful and give them information to make educated choices, including a list of resources even if they don’t buy.
“Because we’ve come from the caregiver side, we know that looking for mobility devices is confusing and frustrating, especially if they’re new to it,” Scott says. “So, we’re mobility consultants first and view ourselves as educators and problem solvers, showing our customers the top products that exist for their needs today, and for the needs they may have in the future if they have a progressive illness.”
Lara says there are great mobility solutions, but “it’s a matter of ensuring people are paired with the right devices for their needs.” Additionally, the Vineyards and their team make sure mobility devices are manageable for caregivers, so they stay safe. When necessary, an extension of the Mobility Plus team includes an occupational therapist or a physical therapist who helps determine what equipment and features will work for mobility needs at home.
Community consulting on mobility
Another extension of Mobility Plus includes health care professionals who teach free educational classes, including safe patient transfers and care strategies for dementia. Upcoming in December, there is a Dementia Immersion Experience, a discussion on Becoming Your Loved One’s Caregiver, and a class on Accessible Travel.
“We want to be the community’s partner and informational resource for mobility,” says Scott, a National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Arizona Falls Prevention Coalition, and Arizona in Home Care Association member. The Vineyards are also part of a select group of Senior Home Safety Specialists nationwide.
As a winner of the 2022 and 2023 Best of the Desert and 2023 Neighborhood Faves, Mobility Plus doesn’t go unappreciated by its community.
“We’re extremely passionate about what we do, and that’s what makes it work,” says Lara.
For more information about Mobility Plus, visit mobilityplus.com/northscottsdale or call 480-687-4043 to schedule an appointment.
This content is sponsored by Mobility Plus.