Lifetec; February Article

Ann’s Story - Alicia Perry

How did LifeTec work with Ann to gain freedom and achieve greater independence?

LifeTec uses an evidence based approach to support people we work with. This involved helping Ann ‘IMAGINE’ her goals and ways of achieving these. Ann was interested in being able to independently transport herself and her mobility aid. We helped her identify what was preferred and the ‘must have’ features, based on their abilities.

We then supported her to ‘SEEK’ options suitable for meeting her goals and discussed the benefits and limitations of the assistive technology options. For Ann, this involved discussing a variety of scooter transportation options such as trailers, hoists and lifters either retrofitted or pre-modified.

LifeTec then assisted Ann to ‘CHOOSE’ the preferred option through trying shortlisted options to see how they would really work for Ann to meet her specific goals. For Ann, she chose the Nissan Cube and we assisted her to access government funding (Vehicle Options Subsidy Scheme) to support her to purchase this.

The final phase was the ‘LIVE’ phase where we provided training to help her use the technology safely and as effectively as possible. For Ann, this involved delivery of the vehicle and hand over, where she could practice using the lifter to get her mobility aid in and out of the vehicle.

What are the top technologies used by Ann? What do these offer her?

Ann required an electric scooter to help her travel long distances to visit shops, get her to appointments and other community spaces. This type of assistive technology offered her the ability to leave her home, drive to her location and have the mobility to access the community environment.

What is involved in identifying each individual’s requirements?

This is a process starting with the discussion of goals, assessment of a person’s physical abilities and then trialling assistive technologies. During these different phases, requirements for the individual are  identified and prioritised. This is a collaborative process which involves the person we are supporting, the LifeTec therapist and sometimes additional support people such as other health professionals, family, carers or friends.