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Using technology at home

What is assistive technology?

Assistive technology is an aid, device or system that helps a person:

  • manage their home environment such as electronic devices which control lights, temperature, doors, curtains or windows
  • communicate
  • move around their home
  • carry out everyday activities such as bathing, getting dressed and preparing food
  • stay safe by using emergency calling or location devices.

Things to consider

  • How much does it cost to buy, maintain or repair the item?
  • Is training needed to use the item?
  • Is it easy to use the item (some people stop using a device if it is hard to use when compared to the benefits received)?
  • Does the item rely on an internet connection (an internet connection may not always be available)?
  • Does the item have “Smart” technology that can customise responses to the user’s needs?
  • Are there electronic devices (such as computers, tablets and smartphones) available that might suit a person with disability (for example voice activated controls, predictive text, adjustments for size of image, and spoken or auditory cues)?
  • Is there a simple or cheap option available? Some smart phone apps or tools can make a significant difference in daily life of a person with disability.

More information

  • Ability Technology—user videos of how people with disability are using technology in their daily lives.
  • The Able Movement—find out how Christopher used his social networks to help him open his front door.
  • Aids, equipment and assistive technologies—information about types of aids and equipment, equipment providers, buying from overseas, help with costs, and who to contact for advice.
  • LifeTec—specialist information and advice to maximise the independence and safety of people with disability.
  • Medical aids and equipment—find out about subsidy schemes coordinated by the Medical Aids Subsidy Scheme (MASS).
  • Community Care Smart AT collaborative—a platform for Community Care providers to collaborate, learn and access local, state, national and international resources and expertise.
  • Christopher Hills finds a solution to open an electric door with his iPhone and gives an overview of 3 ways switch control can work to suit different needs.