Access for All Weekly Tip
For the week of April 2 - 6
According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, approximately 400,000 Americans are currently diagnosed with MS, and every week 200 more learn that they have this disease.
Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic autoimmune disease of the central nervous system, and is often characterized by a pattern of exacerbation and remission. Symptoms may be mild, such as numbness in the limbs, or severe, such as paralysis or loss of vision. Possible symptoms include fatigue, loss of coordination, muscle weakness, spasticity, numbness, slurred speech, visual difficulties, paralysis, and muscle cramps.
Situations and Solutions: A resource nurse with MS was having difficulty accessing her workstation. Her employer widened the floor space in her workstation to allow her easier access from her wheelchair and added an adjustable keyboard tray, monitor holder, and telephone tray. In addition, the employee was provided a flexible schedule so that she could continue her medical treatment.
A teacher with MS was having difficulty communicating with students because his speech became soft and slurred when he was tired. He was given a personal speech amplifier so he would not have to strain to project his voice, and he was allowed to schedule his classes so he could take periodic breaks.
Call Oklahoma ABLE Tech (800-257-1705) for accommodation ideas or to borrow assistive technology. ABLE Tech’s AT Device Demonstration and Short-Term Loan Program works just like a book library. Here are some devices that relate to this article:
Need funding to assist in the purchase of assistive devices? Oklahoma ABLE Tech offers a comprehensive online guide for Oklahoma Funding for AT. Additionally, ABLE Tech, in partnership with Oklahoma Assistive Technology Foundation (OkAT) and BancFirst of Stillwater, offers Financial Loans to purchase assistive technology. Several programs of funding are available, all with LOW interest rate and flexible repayment terms, as well as special qualification opportunities for applicants who might not qualify for a traditional bank loan. For questions on the Financial Loan opportunities, call Shelley Gladden for more information at 800-257-1705.
Rob Carr, Accessibility Coordinator
Linda Jaco, Associate Director for Sponsored Programs