Harris Family Assistive Technology Lab

Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital's assistive technology service is provided by occupational, physical and speech therapists who have completed specialized training and education in the area of assistive technology and augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). The assistive technology specialists help people who have limited mobility from stroke, brain injury, spinal cord injury or neurological deficits as seen in multiple sclerosis or amylotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), to gain greater independence in their home, work, school and community environments. Assistive technology specialists at Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital provide evaluations and prescriptions to identify solutions using various equipment and technology that maximize the individual's ability to perform daily tasks with the highest level of independence and to improve overall quality of life.

Assistive Technology Lab

Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)

AAC refers to technology (speech generating devices or SGDs) and strategies that enable non-speaking individuals to communicate. Using the latest in AAC technology and intervention strategies, specially trained speech-language pathologists provide AAC evaluations and treatments for children and adults with complex communication needs. Collaborative evaluations and treatments with specially trained occupational and physical therapists are also available when needed to optimize access and positioning to AAC technology. AAC evaluations include trials of technology and strategies, assistance with acquiring funding for recommended technology, and training.

For more information or to schedule an evaluation, please contact Dr. Susan Fager at 402.413.4506.

In addition to the clinical AAC services provided in the Harris Family Assistive Technology Lab, collaborative research projects are currently underway in the Communication Center in the Institute for Rehabilitation Science and Engineering that focus on the development of new assistive and augmentative communication technologies. To learn more about the Communication Center and current research projects click here.

Assistive Technology Lab

Computer Access

Assistive technology specialists work with people to increase their ability to operate a computer for work, school or home following disabilities that limit their mobility or muscle function. An evaluation is completed to identify a person's individual needs, goals and functional capacity. The therapist then works to accommodate the person by creating a customized computer set up that allows the greatest level of independence with computer tasks. A variety of assistive technology solutions are available to reach a person's goals with computer access such as switches, keyboard modifications, voice activation, eye gaze and keyboard access devices.

For more information or to schedule an evaluation, please contact Dr. Susan Fager at 402.413.4506.

Environmental Control (Electronic Activities of Daily Living or EADLs)

Electronic Activities of Daily Living, or EADLs devices give people with disabilities a means to control telephones, televisions and other audio visual devices, lamps, lights and other appliances and attendant call systems.

The assistive technology specialists evaluate each person's individual needs and desires to independently control electronic devices in their environment, using their functional abilities. The therapist can provide custom modifications to software, electronics and other appliances to promote independence and safety in their environment.

The Harris Family Assistive Technology Lab provides a vast inventory of switches and environmental control devices that are available for evaluation and trial, offering solutions for independent operation and control of various devices in a person's home, work or school environment. Therapists also consult with durable medical equipment specialists to determine funding options that may cover assistive technology device costs. The Harris Family Assistive Technology Lab provides a unique opportunity to see assistive technology solutions in action and facilitates the most appropriate match between the person served and technology available.

For more information or to schedule an evaluation, please contact Dr. Susan Fager at 402.413.4506.

Equipment Lending Resources

When someone needs assistive technology, it is often needed immediately in order to improve their quality of life and ability to participate in daily functional tasks. Unfortunately, insurance approval processes for most devices can take up to three months. This leaves the person unable to carry out meaningful activities of daily living until funding is approved.

Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital
5401 South St.
Lincoln, NE 68506
Phone: (402) 413-3000
Toll-Free: (800) 676-5448