We fund assistive technology based on both the cost and the risk of the item. This means we need different information from you depending on the cost and risk.
What do we mean by ‘risk’?
Assistive technology can hurt you if it’s not right for you, or if you use it the wrong way. We need to be sure your assistive technology won’t hurt you before we can fund it. When we decide to fund assistive technology, we think about the risk involved.
What’s low risk assistive technology?
When we talk about low risk, we mean assistive technology that is:
- unlikely to cause harm in your day to day life
- available in stores
- does not require professional advice, setup or training for you to use it safely.
Many assistive technology products are low risk, both to you and others. This includes things like non-slip mats, modified cutlery, walking sticks or handheld magnifiers.
If you ask us for low risk assistive technology, we’re required to decide if we’ll include this in your plan in 10 days.
What’s higher risk assistive technology?
Some assistive technology is higher risk. This is often because these items have injured people in the past.
Higher cost assistive technology such as power wheelchairs are likely to be higher risk.
We might consider assistive technology higher risk even if it doesn’t cost very much. For example, bed poles and weighted blankets are higher risk.
You often need professional or skilled advice to pick the right model or size for higher risk assistive technology. You also need to make sure it’s set up properly, and you understand how to use it. This way you’ll get the best outcomes and avoid getting hurt.
We’ll include funding in your plan so you can get advice about any higher risk assistive technology you need before you buy the item. We’ll also include funding for someone to help you to set up and learn how to use it.
If you ask us for higher risk assistive technology, we’re required to decide within 30 days if we’ll include this in your plan.