Assistive technology is an item, piece of (re)habilitation equipment, or product system used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.

Types of assistive devices:

  • Speech readers
  • Telephone relay services
  • Speaking clock/watches
  • Flashing or vibrating alarms
  • Reachers

"14 tech tools that enhance computing for [people with disabilities]" - Computerworld, 02/05/10

Durable Medical Equipment (DME) is equipment which (a) can withstand repeated use, (b) is primarily and customarily used to serve a medical purpose, (c) generally is not useful to a person in the absence of an illness or injury, and (d) is appropriate for use in the home. All requirements of the definition must be met before an item can be considered to be DME.

Almost all DME is designed and specifically adjusted for the person who uses it. It is rarely interchangeable with other equipment. Do not separate someone from his or her DME unless it is a absolute last resort.

Types of DME:

  • Wheelchairs
  • Walkers
  • Shower chairs
  • Adaptive toilet seats
  • Hospital beds
  • Lifts
  • Canes

RESOURCES

AbleData - AbleData is the premier source for impartial, comprehensive information on products, solutions and resources to improve productivity and ease with life’s tasks. They provide a wealth of information to assist domestic and international customers and their family members, vendors, distributors, organizations, professionals and caregivers in understanding assistive technology (AT) options and programs available.

AccessTR.com - The Access to Recreation catalog and web site at www.accesstr.com is full of recreation and exercise equipment. One can find items such as electric fishing reels and other fishing and hunting equipment for the disabled sportsman. There are also adapted golf clubs, swimming pool lifts, wheelchair gloves and cuffs, and bowling. There are devices to help with embroidery, knitting and card playing, videos, books, and practical aides such as wheelchair ramps and book holders.

AliMed - AliMed is a leading provider of medical, healthcare and ergonomic products serving all segments of the healthcare market including hospitals and clinics, nursing homes and long-term care facilities, private medical practices, therapists, and more.

AssistiveTech.net - Their mission is to provide access to information on AT devices and services as well as other community resources for people with disabilities and the general public. The site was created by Georgia Tech's Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access (CATEA), with funding from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), and Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA).

Bruce Medical Supply - Bruce Medical Supply has been selling medical supplies by catalog for over 35 years. They have earned the reputation of being the most respected supplier of medical supplies in the United States. Their compassion and understanding of customer needs has earned praise from professionals and customers throughout the world.

Buffalo Wheelchair - Buffalo Wheelchair is Western New York's most trusted source for all of your custom mobility needs, high end custom rehabilitation technology, and durable medical equipment. Their knowledgeable staff will work with you to evaluate your special needs and provide you with the right product to meet those needs. They welcome you to visit their spacious showroom and let them show you how they can help. "If you can't get to us, We'll come to you." Buffalo Wheelchair offers free in-home evaluation, as well as free delivery and set-up. They have a fully staffed service department and accept most major insurances.

Enabling Devices - Enabling Devices is a company dedicated to developing affordable learning and assistive devices to help people of all ages with disabling conditions.

Express Medical Supply - Express Medical Supply is a family-run medical supply store that has placed customers first since 1994. They believe that offering quality medical supplies, such as adult diapers and wheelchairs, at discounted prices is paramount to the satisfaction of their customers.

HARC Merchantile, LTD - HARC Mercantile Ltd. has been providing assistive devices to the deaf and hard of hearing since 1960. HARC is a leading provider of assistive devices for the hard of hearing and deaf. They also have a limited line of equipment for speech enhancement and those with low vision. Some of the products they sell are: amplified telephones, TV listening systems, induction hearing loop technology, visual and tactile alerting devices for wake-up, fire alarms, and household notification. A large part of what they do is provide personal amplification for those who don't have hearing aids, but need a boost. They can also help those whose hearing aids are just not enough in social situations, lectures, watching TV or other difficult listening situations.

Harris Communications - Harris Communications offers loud alarm clocks and telephones, notification systems and other assistive listening products for deaf and hard of hearing needs. Some of their products include: vibrating alarm clocks, loud amplified telephones, TV listening systems, personal amplification products, accessories for hearing aids, phone alerting systems, door notification devices, smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms, sign language materials.

Hear-More - sells several types of fire alarms with bed shakers, vibrating alarm clock key chains, vibrating and amplified alarm clocks with strobe lights, and more

HiTec - HITEC provides assistive listening devices for individuals experiencing hearing loss. Our product line includes amplified telephones, emergency contact telephones, portable phone amplifiers, personal listening systems, wireless TV headsets, alarm clocks, and wireless accessories such as neck loops for cell phone users.

LiveOakMed.com - Live Oak’s mission is to provide specialty aidsthat will assist those who need to maintain their daily independence in their home or workplace.

MaxiAids.com - MaxiAids serves the blind, visually impaired/low vision, deaf, hard of hearing, mobility challenged, special needs groups, seniors, caregivers, veterans, government agencies and more with a wide variety of products for independent, healthy and active living.

North Coast Medical - For nearly four-decades, North Coast Medical has manufactured, supplied and distributed a broad range of industry-leading product lines across a continuum of rehabilitation medical care. A leader in Occupational, Physical and Hand Therapy medical markets, NCM services the needs of in-patient/out-patient hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, clinics, private practice, pharmacies, resellers and consumers.

Ultratec, Inc. - Since 1978, Ultratec has been working to make telephone access more convenient and reliable for people with hearing loss. Today, their equipment is recognized worldwide as the standard for excellence in text telecommunications.

Weitbrecht Communications Inc. (WCI) - WCI is the nation's largest distributor of assistive listening devices, alerting systems, text telephones and other equipment for people with hearing loss.