This month, we are pleased to welcome our friend and colleague, Andrew Sever, as a guest blogger. Andrew is President of EnABLE Home Solutions and a licensed occupational therapist. Many thanks to Andrew for sharing his expertise with us this month.
Why are most people who consider themselves “accessibility specialists” either builders themselves or sales people trying to sell a product? In each case they have an extra stake in the game beyond simply offering advice. From an online vendor who sells wheelchairs, walkers and stairlifts to a local handyman who builds ramps for fellow church members, anyone can refer to themselves as an accessibility specialist. So what type of “accessibility specialist” can the average person trust to give them honest, unbiased advice for individualized and custom recommendations?
I provide solutions to problems most people don’t realize they have; I am an occupational therapist. I agree that the term “occupational therapy” is an awful title for a profession. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard my patients and clients say, “I don’t need a job, I’m retired.” Actually, the term “occupation” refers to any activity that has meaning and purpose to an individual and that occupies their time. Getting dressed in the morning, taking a shower, preparing a meal, paying bills, gardening in the backyard, golfing with buddies, playing with grandchildren, even watching television are all occupations to someone.
Occupational therapists (OTs) are trained to assess a person’s physical, cognitive, and psychological capabilities. In addition, OTs need to understand what specific activities, or occupations, are most important to an individual. The occupational therapist must then evaluate the environment in which the individual engages in said occupation(s) and identify any obstacles present that may hinder performance. Ultimately, an occupational therapist’s role is to come up with solutions that allow a person with changing needs to successfully participate in their occupations while remaining within their preferred environment.
If you know someone who would like to remain in their home and live as safely and independently as possible but you’re not sure who can help, call an occupational therapist who specializes in accessibility.
Andrew Sever, MS, OTR/L, CAPS, CEAC
EnABLE Home Solutions LLC
(770) 841-9089 (c)
(770) 938-2713 (f)