1.) What are home modifications?
When used as a health term, home modification means a change to the home for the purpose of making the home safer for an aging person or person with a disability. Home modifications can be a simple as adding a grab bar in the bathroom, a handrail on the stairs, or a non-glare bulb in the hallway. More extensive home modifications include ramps and walk-in tubs. Home modifications also involve adaptive equipment such as tub transfer benches, elevated toilet seats, and bed rails.
2.) How do Home Modifications differ from Home Renovations?
Home modifications refer to specific changes to the home for the purpose of safety. Home Renovations are often more extensive projects involving home restoration or remodelling, and are not necessarily connected to personal safety issues.
3.) What is aging-in-place?
Aging-in-place means remaining in one’s own home as one grows older, rather than moving into a family member’s home, nursing home, or other assisted living facility.
4.) Is an Adapt-Able Living assessment covered by insurance/Medicare?
Unlikely. Medicare does not cover a Home Modification assessment. Because medicare generally sets the standard insurances companies follow, it is unlikely a private insurance policy will cover it.
5.) Are there other grants and programs to help pay for home modifications?
For eligible individuals there are low interest loans through HUD, Alpha One and other government organizations. Veterans may be eligible for a HISA benefit of up to $6,800 for most home modifications (https://www.prosthetics.va.gov/psas/HISA2.asp).
6.) How long do Adapt-Able Living Assessments take?
Usually about 2 hours. The personal assessment and home assessment typically each take about an hour. Obviously, each person and the home are unique, so times will vary.
7.) How do I know if I need an Adapt-Able Living assessment?
An assessment is especially important if you:
Use a walker or other device to walk
Use furniture or walls to assist you in walking through the house
Are on more than five prescription medications
Have a history of falls or fear of falling
Any other medical conditions that compromise your mobility/balance/safety in the home.
Of course, anyone who wishes to age-in-place can benefit from an assessment. The older we get, the more challenging it is to become accustomed to changes in the home and develop the habit of using new features. It is also easier (and less painful and costly) to make home modifications before an injury that makes it absolutely necessary occurs.
8.) Will Adapt-Able LLC also perform the modifications?
If clients wish, Adapt-Able Living will coordinate and oversee home modifications through a contractor we have a partnership with. However, clients are free to choose their own contractors. Adapt-Able Living provides a detailed written assessment that the client can provide their own contractors.
9.) Does the Adapt-Able Living personal assessment cover anything other than Falls risks?
General strength, range of motion, and basic eye muscle tests are conducted, as well as an interview discussing the client’s general health, and interests and activities they would like to resume/continue as they age-in-place.
10.) At what age is it appropriate to get an Adapt-Able Living assessment?
There is no certain age. The older we get, the more challenging it is to become accustomed to changes in the home and develop the habit of using new features. It is also easier (and less painful and costly) to make home modifications before an injury that makes it absolutely necessary occurs.
Another important consideration as we age is that our aging friends are also likely to visit our home. Getting modifications that we are likely to need in the future done now may be useful to our guests, enable visits, and encourage others to make the changes they need in their own homes.
11.) How is my primary care provider (PCP) involved in this process?
PCP involvement varies. It may be wise to consult your PCP prior to an assessment, as they may point out concerns and considerations that you might not have thought to provide to Adapt-Able Living during you assessment. If the assessment includes a recommendation for adaptive equipment, it is wise to schedule a visit with your PCP and bring the assessment to discuss it with the PCP. If the PCP agrees to prescribe certain adaptive equipment, it may be covered by insurance/medicare.
12.) Is this a confidential service?
13.) What if there are multiple people in the household with physical issues?
If the issues are similar, clients can choose to assess the person with the most difficulties. For household members with dissimilar issue, Adapt-Able Living can perform a personal assessment for each person, for a modest, added fee.