Posts Tagged ‘universal’
Could Universal Design Be the Next Mainstream Movement in Architecture, Planning?
Release Date: April 20, 2012
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Universal design, which employs design to encourage health and wellness and other quality-of-life improvements, may be poised to become the next mainstream endeavor in architecture and planning, according to two leading experts in the field. (I hope they’re right. – Wayne)
Edward Steinfeld, director of the University at Buffalo’s Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA Center), and Jordana L. Maisel, the center’s director of outreach and policy studies, are authors of a new textbook, “Universal Design: Creating Inclusive Environments.”
“We believe we are close to a watershed moment,” the authors write in the preface to the book, which was released on April 10 and includes chapters on housing, interior design, transportation and more. “Whether they know the term or not, the work of leading architects and design firms reflects the adoption of universal design concepts.” Read the rest of this entry »
This article was originally published at 1 Call Bath Solutions and is re-posted with permission.
Occupational therapists are big picture experts. Let’s take Mary. She’s 85, lives at home and is challenged with Parkinson’s. Sue, her occupational therapist, assesses her physical strengths and weaknesses, how the natural aging process is affecting her (things like eyesight and hearing that affect everyone over time), her medical condition and any psychological issues. And the psychological part doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with Mary—it could be just the typical fears of losing control over her own life and the lack of privacy that comes from depending on others.
In this recessionary economy, home construction is slow, but one bright spot is home modifications for aging in place. I was happy to meet a reputable local contractor who is adopting Universal Design principals and embracing the Aging-in-Place market. They’re going to Houston next week for a Certified Aging in Place (CAPS) class, which covers low-tech construction projects but not high-tech solutions like environmental and medical sensors and telehealth services. Our discussion got me thinking about advice for builders and remodeling contractors and a webpage with business advice that I created several years as Communications Director for HOT. Homeowners of Texas is a non-profit consumer advocacy that helped get an abusive State agency abolished. But until we can produce our own video tutorials for contractors, I’m including several shorts (~5 min) from 5min Media, a leading syndication platform for broadband instructional, knowledge and lifestyle videos.
Housing Options: Retirement and Independent Living Communities
Housing Options: Aging-in-Place
How to Choose a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist
NPR host Michele Norris explores housing options for America’s aging population in her interview with Jon Pynoos, a professor of gerontology policy and planning at USC. (Listen to the broadcast or read the transcript HERE.)
Pynoos describes the high costs of nursing homes and assisted living facilities and the insurance options that pay for them, including Medicare & Medicaid. He then promotes aging-in-place at home as a much lower-cost option, but most homes were designed for people who aren’t old. He calls them Peter Pan homes. They have stairs, inaccessible bathrooms, and inadequate lighting, and they lack many of the safety features that would help people avoid falls.
“I won’t grow up. I don’t want to go to school.
Just to learn to be a parrot, And recite a silly rule.”
To help you assess your home and make modifications, contact a certified aging in place specialist (CAPS) or, if you’re in Central Texas, click HERE to learn about our own assessment services.
Thirteen years after a freak accident left her paralyzed, Rosemarie found a new mission in life: sharing what she has learned about Universal Design. She founded Universal Design Living Laboratory and is building a national demonstration home that will be opened to the public this fall. I’ll be writing a series of articles about her project and start with this, her story.
About The Demonstration Home Project
On June 13, 1998 my husband, Mark Leder, and I decided to celebrate our anniversary by going on a bicycle ride. It was a beautiful day with a clear blue sky, perfect biking weather. I was riding down the path ahead of Mark, when he heard a loud crack and yelled, “Look over there something is falling!” I glanced back at him and suddenly a 3 1/2 ton tree came crushing down on me, leaving me injured on the bike path. My life was changed in that instant! I was paralyzed from the waist down with a spinal cord injury.
Transforming Rural Economies: Bridging The Digital Divide (excerpt)
by Maine State Representative Diane Russell
Growing up in Bryant Pond, about as rural as it gets in Maine, taught me a little something about being at the tail end of innovation. The last crank phone operator station in the country was located right down the street from our home. While the celebrity status is great, the educational piece was the vigorous debate over whether or not our town should upgrade to that fancy new technology — the dial tone.
Wayne Caswell (Modern Health Talk) posted the following comment:
We all know that technology and the Internet are keys to telemedicine, telework (jobs), distance learning, e-commerce, and e-government, but the latest FCC report to Congress says a full one-third of U.S. households lack broadband access. That’s either because they have no access to it or because it’s too expensive or they lack the skills or perceived need.
So, are we willing to write-off entire sectors of our population and give them inferior healthcare and access to jobs, commerce and government because they’re poor, black, Hispanic, elderly, live in rural communities, and don’t have broadband Internet access? Or are we going to fund computer literacy and universal access to broadband? Which is cheaper or better? We can’t always rely on Market Forces. Sometimes public funding is warranted – like NOW (or actually 20 years ago).
We’ve written often about Universal Design principals when remodeling for home healthcare, but here are some thoughts about design elements to avoid. Although the design found in a home is a matter of personal taste, there are a some design elements that professionals think are overused in our homes. eLocal.com polled its panel of experts to find out what elements in home improvement need to be put to rest. Their responses and the reasons for them might not be what you expected. Curious to see what they thought? We present the top 5 design mistakes homeowners make…
HUMAN–SYSTEMS INTEGRATION REPORT BRIEF, 2011
by the National Research Council (www.nationalacademies.org/bohsi)
National Academy of Sciences • National Academy of Engineering • Institute of Medicine • National Research Council
In the United States, health care practices and associated medical devices and information technologies are rapidly moving into the home. This transition, which is likely to accelerate in the future, has raised a host of issues. Care recipients and caregivers have particular capabilities and limitations that can shape home health care processes and procedures. Very few homes have been designed for the delivery of health care. Yet the aging of the population, changes in medical practices, and reductions in health care reimbursement are leading to greater reliance on care at home. Medical equipment and technologies that are designed for hospitals and clinics can be ill-suited for use in the home. The physical and social environment can support or detract from home health care. The rapid growth of home health care has and will have wide-ranging consequences.
The safety, quality, and effectiveness of home health care can be informed by many issues encompassed by the field of human factors research and practice—which studies human capabilities and limitations and their interaction with the design of products, processes, systems, and work environments. For that reason, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality asked the Board on Human-Systems Integration of the National Research Council to conduct a systematic investigation of the role of human factors in home health care. In response, the multidisciplinary Committee on the Role of Human Factors in Home Healthcare was formed to examine a diverse range of behavioral and human factors issues resulting from the increasing migration of medical devices, technologies, and care practices into the home. Its goal was to lay the groundwork for a thorough integration of human factors knowledge and research with the design and implementation of home health care devices, systems, technologies, and practices.