Technology and the environment: supportive resource or barrier for people with developmental disabilities?

Department of Occupational Therapy, Joint Doctoral Program in Disability Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago, Room 311, 1919 West Taylor Street, Chicago, IL 60612-7250, USA.
Nursing Clinics of North America (Impact Factor: 0.59). 07/2003; 38(2):331-49. DOI: 10.1016/S0029-6465(02)00053-1
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Assistive technology and environmental interventions (AT-EI) have been shown to influence community living and participation outcomes for people with developmental disabilities, and important others in their lives. However, many unmet needs for AT-EI remain, and many barriers to accessing and using AT-EI on a daily basis across activities, settings and the life span still exist. This article presents potential applications of AT-EI with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, benefits of AT-EI use, legislative rights ensuring access to AT-EI, funding issues and sources, barriers to AT-EI access and implications for health care professionals. The author advocates that health care professionals collaborate with consumers to advocate for their needs and rights, with them rather than for them, and serve as system interfaces to support people as they transition across systems and settings.

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