- Consider requesting equipment from Home and Community Care Support Services (for the first 28 days) to avoid delays
- ALS Society of Canada delivery time is usually 10 days. The OT should follow up with the client and equipment manager to ensure that equipment is delivered.
OTs will need to recommend equipment for home safety for clients with ALS to enable independence, promote safety and prevent falls with ADLs. Rather than purchasing the equipment, as their needs change as their condition progresses, clients with ALS can access equipment through Home and Community Care Support Services and/or ALS Society of Canada.
OTs should also discuss fall prevention strategies and remove hazards around the house. Here is a checklist for safety – https://www.cdc.gov/steadi/pdf/check_for_safety_brochure-a.pdf
ALS Canada Equipment Program #
The ALS Society of Canada provides assistance for access to assistive equipment through 3 options:
- Loan equipment program
- Funding assistance programs for some leased and rented equipment (stair lift rentals, power wheelchair or communication devices)
- Flexible funding program for small bathroom equipment
For a full list of equipment available for Ontario residents, visit https://als.ca/support-services/inside-of-ontario/equipment/
Other recommended equipment #These items are not part of the ALS Canada Equipment Program, but may be recommended for clients to purchase to maintain independence and safety. Consider insurance for coverage.
- Grab bars
- Comfort height toilet
- Threshold ramp
- Homelifts by Cambridge Elevating (approx. $40,000)
- Porch lift
- Evacuation chair?
- Adjustable bed – some clients don’t like the industrial look of a hospital bed, or want to remain sleeping beside their loved ones.
- Call bell options:
- Doorbells – off-the-shelf door chimes that can be purchased from some hardware stores. The client needs to be able to press the button to activate the doorbell, which may be difficult with decreased hand function.
- Adapted call bell
- Switches for adapted call bells
Home Modifications #
Some clients may wish to modify their homes to make it more accessible. OTs can provide the handout below for an overview of home modification suggestions, and list of some private contractors in Ontario.
Funding Sources #
OTs can discuss the possible funding sources for home modifications with clients and assist with applications as needed. These are some funding sources available for clients in Ontario.
- Claim up to $10,000 per year in eligible expenses
Sources & Further Reading #
- ALS Canada Equipment Program: https://als.ca/support-services/inside-of-ontario/equipment/
- March of Dimes: https://www.marchofdimes.ca/en-ca/programs/am/hvmp/Pages/Home-and-Vehicle-Modifications.aspx