Door Openers for disabilities

4 Ways an Automatic Door Opener Can Make Your Home More Accessible

Door Openers

If you or your loved one are finding ways to live in your home despite mobility issues, installing an automatic door opener may be a huge solution for easier entry and access. If you are using a manual or powered wheelchair, power scooter, walker, knee scooter, or cane, you already know what a challenge opening and going through doors can be. You either have to finagle ways to attempt your way through a door, hoping it won’t close in the midst of your passing through—or wait for someone to open and hold the door for you. An Automatic Door Opener can be the simple solution you are looking for. Here are just four ways a door opener can open up your world for you:

Door Opener Wall Switches

Independence

You can simply push a button and the Automatic Door Opener will open up, pause to give you time to safely pass through, then slowly close behind you. There is no longer the need to wait for someone else to hold the door for you. This may mean you can live more independently, coming and going as you please. Automatic Door Openers can be installed on both exterior and interior doors, making it easy to move freely throughout your own home without assistance.

Security

An Automatic Door Opener can unlatch a locked door, as well as open it for you. After passing smoothly through the open door, it closes behind you and locks again. You can count on the safety and security of these commercial-grade auto door openers. Where there is no door opener, after struggling to get through, you still have to turn around and try to close and lock the door. What a sense of relief and peace to know you can simply push a button to unlock, open, pass through, and the door will close and lock behind you.

Customized Access

The remotes control access can be customized depending on your particular disability. The “Open” button can be installed on a nearby wall or post. A remote with buttons can also be attached to the users’ wheelchair. There are other options if hands cannot be used for the remote controls.

Multiple Uses

An Automatic Door Opener can be used on more than just the front door. One can be installed to open a gate, garage or shed door, a bedroom door, or office. Wherever there is a door in your home that is an obstacle for you or your loved one with any type of mobility challenge, An Automatic Door Opener can be used to make it easy to glide through any doorway. It is another important accessibility tool.

mobility ramps

Wheelchair Ramps are Not Only for Wheelchairs

Wheelchair and scooter ramps

When you think of Wheelchair Ramps, you automatically think of them for wheelchair use. However, ramps are a critical safety apparatus for multiple users in your home, church, school or business. A ramp is much safer and easier to use than stairs for anyone with any type of mobility issue. Think of the various people and equipment which may need to access your steps or change in elevation. A safe even slope is much better to navigate than steps are. A ramp greatly reduces fall risks when compared to steps. Ramps are relatively inexpensive and come in a variety of materials, depending on your application and the amount of traffic it needs to carry. There are appealing Ramps designed for interior or exterior use. Consider how welcome and helpful a Ramp (instead of steps) would be for these users:

 

  • Anyone using a Rollator or Walker of any type.
  • A young family pushing an infant stroller and trying to help a toddler at the same time.
  • Someone using crutches due to a foot or leg injury.
  • An elderly person (even without the assistance of a walker) who is already a high fall risk.
  • A person recovering from hip, foot or knee surgery using a knee scooter.
  • A shopper going in or out the door while bags obscure their vision and offset their balance.
  • Someone who is weak from illness or chemo treatments.
  • One who suffers from vertigo or poor balance.
  • A busy toddler who runs ahead of parents.
  • When weather conditions make stairs unsafe.
  • An expectant mother whose balance is not in peak performance.
  • Any type of delivery that requires carrying boxes by hand or a handtruck.
  • Those who are on oxygen or have breathing issues which leaves them easily winded.
  • Anyone weak from heart problems or other health challenges who cannot safely navigate steps.

Wheelchair Ramp

The useful ways mobility ramps are used is endless. It’s true that there are hundreds of thousands in America who use manual or power wheelchairs, as well as power scooters, who depend on ramps to access homes, churches, businesses, clinics, parks, malls, offices. Yet when you really think about it, millions of other people need ramps for various reasons, as well.

Accessible Solutions for Bathrooms

The Most Dangerous Room for the Mobility Challenged- Bathrooms

Bathrooms are usually the smallest room in the house, but they can be the biggest safety risk for those with any type of mobility challenge. Most likely, there’s a dangerous combination of wet tile floors, slippery tubs, difficulty getting up from a seated position after toileting and cramped space. Add to that mix, the loss of privacy and independence when help is required for those with mobility limitations. The bathroom may be a necessity but it is not a room to be looked forward to by the person who needs help or the caregiver. The bathroom can be an accident waiting to happen (in more ways than one!)

There are some simple changes that can be made in your bathroom to make it easier to access, safer and even offer more independence to use:

Grab Bars

Grab Bars– There is a wide selection of grab bars which can be installed in strategic places near the toilet and tub to aide in getting up and down, as well as having something to hold on to instead of falling.

Shower Chairs

Shower chairs– Multiple models are available to aide in getting safely in the shower or tub—including benches which allow the patient to sit down outside the tub and slide into the tub while seated.

Toilet Accessories

Toilet Accessories– There are portable bedside commodes, raised toilet seats, over commode bars which have stable arm rests to aide in standing up.

Walk-In Bath Tubs

Walk In Tubs– These are great for the safest baths. There is no need to raise legs over the tub. Just walk in, close the door and sit down.

Patient Lifts– When the patient has little to no mobility, a lift can be installed to make transferring to the toilet or bath safer and easier on both patient and caregiver.

Bath Remodels– There are times, the existing bathroom has so many issues for the mobility challenged person, that an Accessibility Professional needs to be involved in making major changes in your bathroom.

Don’t forget to place slip resistant mats or stickers in your bathtub, spray air freshener above toilet instead of on the floor causing a fall risk, and remove throw rugs which can trip someone up. Take a good look at your bathroom to see what small or larger changes need to be made. Get the input from an Occupational Therapist or Accessibility Professional for personalized input on making your bathroom less dangerous.

Homecare patient lift

Patient Lifts- A Vital Accessibility Tool for Homes

Patient Lifts

If you are caring for a loved one with severe mobility issues in your home, no one but you knows how challenging it can be. Even when it is a labor of love, it means a sacrifice of your time, energy and life. It doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your back. One of the most dangerous parts of caregiving is assisting with lifting and transferring. The chronic wear and tear on your musculoskeletal system can be disabling to the caregiver. Sometimes, it can happen with just one wrong move! That’s why it is critical to have the correct patient lift in your home to prevent injury to the caregiver and to the patient.

Studies have proven that the proper use of a patient lift can prevent career-changing injuries to nurses, aides, therapists and professional caregivers. That’s why more and more clinical settings use these vital tools. No one but a caregiver realizes how physically hard it is to safely move a patient. In clinical settings, most pros know to call for help when lifting or transitioning. Even with extra people, it can be an injury–in-the-making. When you are the sole caregiver at home, you cannot always call for extra manpower to move a mobility-challenged patient.

Ask an Accessibility Professional to help you choose the proper Patient Lift for your unique situations- depending on the size, weight, disability and location of the patient you will be lifting. The correct Patient Lift can greatly reduce injury, stress, and amount of time to lift or move your loved one. Perhaps your loved one has a spinal injury, is a stroke or heart patient,  or is limited by a genetic issue. There are Patient Lifts such as:

  • For toileting and hygiene use.
  • Portable Floor lifts which can be moved from room to room
  • Overhead lifts that are permanently anchored in the ceiling to lift patient to change bedding, transition, and lower to a wheelchair.
  • Patient Lifts on tracks that glide from room to room.
  • Bariatric lifts (for heavier patients)
  • Therapeutic Lifts (sit-to-stand, walking, etc.)
  • Power Lift Chairs (home recliners and for access in and out of vehicles)

Finding the proper Patient Lift for your loved one at home can make so much difference in the quality of everyday life—for both the patient and caregiver. A quick safe transfer means more time for other activities. Some lifts offer more independence for both the patient and caregiver. Finding a good Patient Lift can be helpful no matter what the age, illness, or disability is. It can mean the difference in being able to care safely for a loved one in your own home.

Vehicle Lift for Minivans

Choosing the Correct Vehicle Lift for Your Wheelchair or Scooter

A vehicle lift for wheelchairs or scooters sure makes it easier to load and transport your mobility device with your personal vehicle. It can be one of your greatest accessibility tools since it opens up your world wherever you drive. When you begin looking for which type vehicle lift to get to transport your wheelchair or power scooter, there are some important points to take into consideration before making your final decision.

Vehicle Lift for MinivansWhat Type of Vehicle do You Have?

The make and model of your new or existing vehicle is important when it comes to selecting the proper fit in a Wheelchair or Scooter Lift. There are quite a few models to choose from that can be correctly installed on vans, cars, SUV’s, Crossovers or pickup trucks. Some vehicle lifts for wheelchairs are for carrying your device inside and others are transported outside the vehicle. It is vital to know what type vehicle you have to determine the proper lift. In the case of new vehicle purchases, there are some grants available for certain disability modifications, depending on the manufacturer. So that is another consideration.Vehicle Lifts for Wheelchairs

Do You Want to Transport Inside or Outside Your Vehicle?

There are benefits to both interior and exterior vehicle wheelchair lifts. A lift that carries your mobility device inside your vehicle is great for protecting from the weather. The indoor lifts are simple to operate. The person in the wheelchair or power scooter simply rolls onto the platform, then the lift is operated by a remote control to lift and store the wheelchair or scooter inside your van, SUV or Crossover. A lot of models leave second row seating open for passengers so you can take your wheelchair or scooter along with family and friends. There are even some models which leave room for third row seating but require folding up your wheelchair to take up less room. Exterior Vehicle Lifts for wheelchairs are usually platforms that allow the user to roll the device on, then it is lifted up and pulled by a hitch and trailer behind your vehicle. This is the best option for carrying more passengers and ease of loading and going.Big Lifter by Bruno

Weight Capacity Considerations

It is vital to know the weight your wheelchair or power scooter to select a Vehicle lift model which can handle the weight of your device. Your accessibility professional can help you choose a vehicle lift that can handle the weight of your device. If you have more than one device (one for lightweight shopping and quick trips and another for heavier durability for rough terrain) choose a lift that can handle your heaviest wheelchair or scooter. It is also critical to choose a hitch for the exterior models that can the correct weight capacity.

Work With a Trained Professional to Select and Install the Appropriate Lift

There are so many products available on the market to help transport your mobility device. Working with a trained professional will ensure that you are provided the most appropriate lift for your car, truck, van or SUV. AccessNSM has dozens of branches across the country staffed with accessibility consultants, trained by the manufacturers of these lifts, and can assist you in accessing your situation for the most appropriate solution. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation, vehicle assessment.

Wheelchair ramps for homes

Differences in Wood, Steel and Aluminum Wheelchair Ramps

Wheelchair ramps, often referred to as Handicap Ramps, are one of the most universal ways to provide easy access to homes, schools, public places and businesses. People who use a mobility device such as a power or manual wheelchair or power scooter or even walkers will tell you what a welcome sight ramps are any time there are changes in elevation. In 2016, it was estimated over 2.2 million Americans depending on wheelchairs for mobility. Another 6.5 used canes, walkers or crutches to get around. There is a great need for wheelchair ramps in every arena of life. There are models for every situation.

Since each location is unique, the design and measurements will be individualized. Let one of AccessNSM’s professionals measure and design the layout so it meets all ADA standards. They are knowledgeable in knowing how much space is needed for turns and the safe degree of angels. We carry National Ramp Wheelchair Ramps. Next you can decide which material to craft your ramp from.

Wooden Wheelchair Ramp Installation

Wooden Wheelchair Ramps

  • The most economical investment up front
  • Great choice for private residences or small apartments or businesses
  • Pressure treated to endure weather
  • Warm natural look which can be painted or stained to match any style
  • Wood deck spacing to allow proper drainage

Steel Wheelchair Ramp

Steel Wheelchair Ramps

  • Attractive, heavy duty powder coated steel has a three year warranty
  • Textured flooring protects from slip and falls and allows for immediate drainage
  • Due to its modular design, it can be quickly put into any configuration for your property
  • The unique cone mounted rail guards offer extra strength and durability
  • Since it holds up to 800lbs, it is a good choice for residential, public or commercial use

Aluminum Wheelchair Ramp Installation Garden City NY

Aluminum Wheelchair Ramps

  • Lifetime warranty and 100% maintenance free
  • The only aluminum open mesh on the market. Offers amazing drainage
  • Maximum traction for best safety feature
  • Powder coated color options to complement style
  • 800lb capacity makes it an excellent choice for commercial use

All of our Wheelchair Ramps are American made in modular sections making them the strongest safest and most durable ramps. The modular design makes them quick to install. AccessNSM has a team of professionals to measure, design and install a ramp in your home or business to provide welcome access for wheelchair or scooter users. The local branch near you has an accessibility professional close by to consult with you at no obligation to help you choose whether you want a wood, steel or aluminum wheelchair ramp.

Church accessibility stairlifts ramps and more

Make Your Church Handicap Accessible

Church accessibility stairlifts ramps and more

Make your church open and easily accessible to those who use wheelchairs, power scooters, walkers, and to all those who simply face challenges moving through life. In fact, over 7 million Americans use some type of mobility device. About 2 million use wheelchairs or power scooters. The rest report using canes, crutches or walkers. With our older generation growing at such a rapid rate, this group of mobility-challenged people is growing daily. The reasons for these disabilities range from osteoarthritis, brain injuries, progressive diseases, war wounds, accidents, strokes and genetic birth issues. No matter the cause, each of these individuals is valuable and unique. Each one of these children and adults need easy access to your church.

No matter how old or new your church structure is, there are many viable ways to make some modifications to your church facility to make it easy for these individuals and their caregivers to come worship. They need the fellowship of other believers and they have much to offer the church, as well. Here are a few modifications you can easily make to welcome those with mobility challenges to your
church:

Wheelchair Ramp

This should be one of the first modifications. The entry into your church tells whether or not your church is accessible. If there is any type of change in elevation or stairs, a Wheelchair ramp (or Handicap ramp) offers a way past those impassable obstacles. Wheelchair or Scooter ramps can be used inside or outside wherever there is a change in levels such as entrances, exits, steps, or even to the stage or altar. There are even portable ramps available which can be moved from one location to another.

Automatic Door Openers

Doors are another huge challenge for those using any type of mobility device. Think of trying to open a door and hold it open when you are using a wheelchair, power scooter, any type of walker or cane, or even simply growing older. An automatic door opener opens at the touch of a button mounted close by and stays open long enough for the person using the device to go through, and then shuts slowly behind them. They can be used on both interior and exterior doors.

Stairlifts and Wheelchair Elevators

Most churches have stairs somewhere in their building. Any type of stairs (even a small set of steps) is an automatic roadblock to anyone with a mobility device or those who can no longer safely navigate stairs. Your church can solve the stair problem in several ways- ramps have already been mentioned;

Stairlifts provide a seat which rides a rail system installed along the edge of the stairs; Inclined Platform Lifts are a platform which can carry a wheelchair in use up and down stairs; and then there are a lot of models of Vertical Platform Lifts or Wheelchair Elevators which are open or enclosed little elevators that take a small amount of floor space, can easily be installed since they are self-standing elevator platforms which lift the person in a wheelchair up and down levels. All of these are also available for indoor or outdoor use.

Bathroom Accessibility

Another vital part of making your church accessible is to provide a bathroom large enough to accommodate a wheelchair. The proper grab bars in bathrooms are important for safety and maneuverability. It is helpful to have an Occupational Therapist or one of AccessNSM’s accessibility professionals evaluate your church to offer suggestions to improve access to all those who use mobility devices of any kind, as well as the generation that is aging.

Don’t forget to leave some open areas in your sanctuary for those in wheelchairs, scooters and using walkers to sit so they can easily join in worship. AccessNSM is honored to offer no obligation consultation to get your church started towards opening up your church to all those with mobility issues. Call us. Fill out our contact form or give us a call to request a free evaluation of your church.

Aging in place planning

Preparing to Age in Your Own Home

Aging in place planning

Over one-third of households in America are occupied by one or more residents who are 60 years or older. That population is growing each year as the Baby Boomers grow older. It is wise to begin planning for the aging process before your retirement. The majority of seniors wish to reside in the home they have invested in financially and emotionally. It might be the home where they raised their family, where they know their neighbors, where they are familiar with the community and surrounding services. Many times their mortgage is either paid off or close to it. There are many things you can do to prepare your home so you can stay at home as you age in place instead of ending up in a nursing home.

Financial Plans

  • There is a lot of wisdom in making financial plans to prepare for the years ahead.
  • Lower your debt as you grow older so you can live comfortably on less income.
  • Get the help of a financial advisor to get the most from the money you have
  • Once you have a plan in place, discuss your plan with family members so if the time comes you cannot make decisions, they can carry out your desires.

Social Activity Plans

  • Keep building healthy relationships with your family and friends through regular interactions. Those social connections increase the joy and overall well-being in your life.
  • Stay connected through social media so you can keep involved in the lives of those you love even when you don’t get to see them face to face as often.
  • Church and other groups can provide regular friendships which keep you involved with others socially.
  • Keep helping others through friendship, encouragement, and service. It gives you purpose.

Home Modification Plans

  • Remove safety issues such as area rugs and clutter which can easily cause falls.
    Install grab bars, walk-in tubs, shower chairs and other bath safety products in the bathroom.
  • Increase lighting to avoid falls and install light switches on either end of the hall.
  • If you have stairs, have a stairlift or wheelchair elevator installed so you can still access all levels of your home safely. Perhaps a ramp is needed for wheelchairs or scooters.
  • Invest in a power lift recliner so you can enjoy the comfort, support and flexibility of a great recliner now and as you age. It can lift you from sitting to standing as well as change in multiple positions.

Brainstorm of some other preparations you can begin making now to age in your own home. Feel free to contact one of our local branches across the United States if you would like assistance with making sure your home has adequate home accessibility solutions to allow you to be safe and independent in your living environment.

AccessNSM was excited to be part of the Surprise Squad to help woman gain mobility in her home

Our very own Matthew Butterfield was excited to be part of the Surprise Squad on the Western Mass news channel. He worked with the team to provide Sandra Dudek a stairlift, so she could access her entire home.

CHICOPEE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) –

A medical condition threatened to force a Chicopee woman out of the home she’s lived in for the past 30 years.

After learning about her situation, the Western Mass News and Lia Auto Group Surprise Squad decided to step in.

Sandra Dudek has spinal stenosis which is narrowing her spine.

After seeing her sister go through her fair share of emotional struggles, Cynthia Sayre wants nothing more than for Sandra to be happy in the place she’s always called home.

“Sandra Dudek is my only sibling. In her 76 years, she’s run into many difficulties like losing her dear husband, her only child, and now she has spinal stenosis,” said Sayre.

As Sandra becomes less mobile she may need to move out of her two-story house which holds her final memories of her husband and son.

“I lost my husband 18 years ago and I lost my son two years ago, and it was beautiful here. I mean this is home,” said Dudek.

Dudek’s home that has become difficult to get around since she’s had some serious surgeries.

“I had one in the front where they replaced some of the discs and they had to go in through the back and do it again,” Dudek noted.

It’s also been hard on her sister Cynthia, who lives 45 minutes away, along with her next door neighbors.

The Western Mass News and Lia Auto Group Surprise Squad, along with Matthew Butterfield with AccessNSM in Chicopee was able to gift Sandra with a brand new stair lift.

What would usually take Sandra five to ten minutes, will now only take seconds.

See full story here.

 

 

National Seating & Mobility Expands Home Access Business with Acquisition

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (June 1, 2018) – AccessNSM, a division of National Seating & Mobility (NSM), propels the company’s trajectory of growth with the acquisition of Home Safe in Tampa, Fla. The purchase of Home Safe, a preferred home accessibility provider for many third party payers including workers compensation administrators and Veterans Administration facilities, accelerates NSM’s growing position as a national home modification and accessibility leader.

“NSM’s is committed to expand our reach and broaden our capabilities supporting the journey to independence for our clients,” said Bill Mixon, NSM CEO. “This acquisition not only significantly expands our footprint, but also enhances our nationwide network of branches and mobility experts with the addition of a team of experienced home accessibility experts.”

Home Safe, a national full-service home modification and accessibility provider, was established in 2000 and headquartered in Tampa. The company provides a full suite of home modification construction services, bathroom modifications, room additions, customized ramping, vehicle lifts and modifications, stairlifts, ceiling track lifts, vertical platform lifts, environmental controls, and offers a full menu of services designed to make homes accessible for their medically fragile and mobility-challenged clients.

The company’s co-founder, Ward Farley, will stay on board with NSM after the acquisition and will continue to lead the Tampa operation. Ferenc Moricz, ATP, will join NSM through the acquisition, and will provide support through a CRT lens to ensure a clinically holistic approach to accessibility within the home.

“Home Safe is respected in the industry for the company’s strong focus on quality and reputation for customer satisfaction,” said Mixon. “Their experienced team will play an integral role in driving the growth of our home access business.”

About National Seating & Mobility

National Seating & Mobility is the nation’s premier Complex Rehab Technology Solutions provider, partnering with physicians, therapists and clients across the U.S. to design customized innovative mobility, rehabilitation and adaptive product solutions for individuals with disabilities. Founded in 1992, the company has grown from five locations to a national network of professional Assistive Technology Providers (ATPs). National Seating & Mobility has earned the highest professional accreditation from the independent, not-for-profit, The Joint Commission. As preeminent accrediting body for U.S. healthcare organizations, The Joint Commission maintains unrivaled industry standards. For more information visit nsm-seating.com.

More details to come. Please check back for more information.