Assistive Technology includes any item, piece of equipment or system that helps people achieve greater independence and quality of life. The goal is to increase, maintain or improve the functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities. A range of low- to high-tech devices are available. Low-tech devices are usually less expensive, don’t require a lot of training and have fewer features. High-tech devices are generally more expensive and while they may require more in-depth training, they tend to have multiple features and purposes. The following are examples of assistive technology:
Aids for Daily Living: Self-help aids for use in activities such as bathing, cooking, dressing, eating and home maintenance.
Communication Aids: Devices for people with little or no speech, including augmentative communication devices and electronic and manual communication boards.
Educational Aids: Devices that allow people with disabilities to perform work or school-related activities. Examples are input and output devices, modified or alternate keyboards and special software that allow people with disabilities to use a computer.
Mobility Aids: Devices to allow freer movement, such as patient lifts, transfer aids and all types of wheelchairs and three-wheel vehicles.
Sensory Aids: Devices to help people with visual or hearing disabilities such low-vision aids and telecommunication devices for the deaf.