Putting a Plan Together for Independent Living

The Story

Though experiencing health issues that would ultimately require her to need more intensive care, including possible round-the-clock assistance, Angie wanted to maintain her independence and continue to live on her own without being reliant on a staff person constantly in her home.

Following conversations about her needs and wishes, a support and response plan was created with her team that not only made her feel supported, but maintained her desired level of independence as well.

The Outcome

Angie moved into her own apartment supported by CCRI’s Independent by Design program which helped to identify, implement, and monitor technology solutions to meet her medical and quality of life needs. Along with hourly staff services to assist with household tasks, technology supports provide monitoring and assistance for needs such as waking up on time and medication management.

Putting a plan together that considered Angie’s needs and desired living situation resulted in an overall improvement in her independence and reduced her reliance on assistance. She is healthier and continues to remain very active in the community—just the way she likes it.

Watch the video to learn how Angie and her team began the planning process:

Begin Planning or visit the ARRM Technology Resource Center to learn about more success stories and case studies showing how technology is changing the lives of those living with disabilities.

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Required Technology Discussions

New legislation requires technology supports be discussed at all 45-day planning meetings.

New legislation goes into effect on August 1, 2017, requiring technology supports be discussed as part of all 45-day planning meetings for people with disabilities. These meetings establish the needs of the individual receiving services, their personal goals, and the supportive services necessary to meet these objectives.

It starts with a conversation

Technology supports are becoming a core option for more and more people. These supports are increasing independence while reducing the overall reliance on in-person staff time. Due to the variety of technologies and systems available—from remote monitoring to assistive devices— some form of technology support can be a part of almost anyone’s care plan. It all starts with a conversation between the person receiving services, their family, their provider, and their case manager to determine what options might be a good fit based on their person-centered plans.

Because this type of support marks a change in the look and feel of supportive services, questions and reluctance to even begin the conversation keep hundreds from having real discussions about technology as an option. That’s why Minnesota Statute 245D was revised this session to require teams to include a discussion about technology in all 45-day planning meetings. While the statute does not require that technology be used, the required discussion will open the opportunity for teams or team members who might have questions about initiating the use of technology.

A new source of information

As a key player in developing and passing the legislation, ARRM committed to ensuring resources are available to support conversations—including key information about technology supports and examples of successful implementations. ARRM’s new Technology Resource Center will house an ever-growing body of the latest information and tools related to utilizing technology to support people living more independent lives.

Get Started

Download ARRM’s one-page summary of what’s required under the new legislation and check out the rest of the Technology Resource Center for guidance as conversations begin.


 

Asking the right questions

Utilizing assessment tools to help identify goals and begin conversations surrounding technology.

Assessments for remote monitoring—and technology in general—help teams ask the right questions to identify goals and outcomes technology may assist with. Most technology service vendors and many service providers have their own assessment process to help fine tune outcomes and recommend specific tool options. The following basic questions are a good place to start the conversation:

  1. What is/are the thing(s) the person wants to do with less caregiver intervention?
    Do they want to live in their own home with less staff; be in their own room without staff checking in all the time; get to work; take medications; choose and make their own food; etc.
  2. What are the risks/vulnerabilities if the person did this without or with reduced caregiver intervention?
    What would the caregiver need to know to be comfortable NOT being physically present?
  3. What prompts, tools, or support would the person need to help him/her manage this without having a caregiver physically present all the time?
    Identify only what you want the tool to do at this point; not the technology solution. For example, prompt to take meds, if hasn’t done so; prompt if not out of bed by 7:00 and notify caregiver if not out by 7:30; identify possible falls; prompt or turn off stove, if left unattended.

Assessment templates are included in the Technology Resource Library as examples. The Ohio Remote Monitoring Assessment and Instructions was developed and has been used in Ohio to help teams consider and discuss when remote supervision for a person or group might be appropriate and what the needs are. The Hammer Residences’ Person Centered Technology Support Addendum is used to consider assistive technology on a broader scale. Ohio and Hammer Residences’, Inc. have given their permission for others to use and adapt these tools to meet individual needs.

Visit the Resource Library to review additional tools that may be used to help begin the conversation.

 

Technology On The Job

Dylan Dreifke provides outstanding customer service at The Home Depot by utilizing his iPad, a free Home Depot app, and his amazing memory (prior to being hired, he memorized all product and product category locations throughout the entire store!).

Dylan greets people who enter The Home Depot by using his iPad along with customized sentence software which he purchased on his own. Paired with a speaker bought by Opportunity Partners, Dylan is able to greet and communicate with customers to provide excellent service by asking customers what they are looking for and then leading them in his wheelchair to the appropriate location.

Check out Dylan’s story in the news:

Visit the ARRM Technology Resource Center to learn about more success stories and case studies showing how technology is changing the lives of those living with disabilities.

Remote monitoring starts with a conversation

The Story:

An exploration of technology support options began when a group of men with developmental disabilities expressed their desires for increased privacy and independence. These men had been supported by staff 24/7 and wanted to reduce the amount of time caregivers spent in their home. A conversation began with the group of men, regulators, guardians, and providers to find a solution everyone was comfortable with.

The Outcome:

After extensive research assessing normal habits, safety concerns, and abilities to respond to emergency situations, a plan was implemented utilizing remote monitoring technology.  Following the implementation, the men’s home became almost exclusively staffed remotely during nights and evenings. All parties were pleased with the dedication to safety and the care taken in working through all ‘what-if’ scenarios.

And what do the men think of their increased independence? “Awesome” sums up one man’s feelings towards what it’s like living with the new plan in place.

Watch the video to learn more about the process:

 

Start the Conversation or visit the ARRM Technology Resource Center to learn about more success stories and case studies showing how technology is changing the lives of those living with disabilities.