Home Modification

woman reaching for cabinet in kitchen

Remaining in one’s home is important for individuals with disabilities as well as for those who are experiencing age-related mobility changes. In order to ensure safety and independence, some modifications to the home may be necessary.

Home modifications are changes made to adapt living spaces to meet the needs of people with physical limitations so that they can continue to live independently and safely in their home. Modifications may include adding assistive technology or making structural changes to the home. Modifications can range from something as simple as replacing cabinet doorknobs with pull handles to full-scale construction projects that require installing wheelchair ramps and widening doorways.

Easterseals Crossroads offers home modification evaluations performed by a qualified healthcare professional independent from the contractor to ensure that the consumer received the appropriate modifications to maximize function.

Evaluation Step-by-Step Process

Initial Interview
Our well-qualified physical therapy / occupational professionals conduct an initial phone interview with the client and/or caregiver to determine all concerns and structural changes that may be needed. After that, a free estimate of our home modification evaluation will be provided.

Free Estimate
A free estimate for our the home modification evaluation will be provided based on the information obtained during the initial phone interview.

In-home Visit
Once our estimate is accepted, we will provide an in-home visit to evaluate the client’s home for any barriers that should be removed or safety devices that should be added in order to maximize safety and independence.

Written Report
After the on-site visit, we will design and provide you with a detailed home modification evaluation written report. This report will contain identify our recommendations on how to eliminate structural barriers and challenges, as well as how to provide for you maximum safety and independence in your home. We will give consideration to the following: medical conditions; disease processes; age-related changes; recognition of the role of informal support systems and caregivers; sudden or traumatic injuries requiring temporary accommodations; medical equipment size, placement and use; psychosocial and communication issues.

Common funding sources include Medicaid A&D Waiver, Medicaid Choice, Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), Ramp Up Grant (Easterseals Crossroads can provide applications) and private pay.

Home Modification Evaluation Specialists

John Kelly, PTA, CAPS
John is a certified physical therapist assistant with a background in both inpatient and outpatient physical rehabilitation for adults with a variety of disabilities. John previously specialized in providing physical therapy services to adults with neurological injuries in an outpatient rehabilitation unit specializing in returning to work. He is a Certified Aging in Places Specialist, an IFSSA certified provider of Home Modification Assessments and Inspections for Indiana Medicaid A&D Waiver recipients, and is the co-instructor of the course, “Modifications for Aging in Place” through the Center on Aging and Community at the University of Indianapolis. John coordinates the Home Modification Evaluation Program at Easterseals Crossroads.

Alison Kistner, OTR/L, CAPS
Alison is a registered occupational therapist with a background in physical rehabilitation of children. She has specialized in working in home, clinic, and school settings. Alison has over 25 years of experience in providing occupational therapy services.
For more information about home modification services, contact us.

Home Modification Evaluation Process

  1. Initial interview and consultation with the case manager, client, and/or caregiver to determine scope and complexity of needs.
  2. In-Home Assessment of the client’s mobility needs and barriers to accessibility.
  3. Written Report with recommendations that support maximizing the client’s and caregiver’s abilities, taking into consideration:
    • The client’s function in light of his/her disability
    • Disease processes
    • Vocational outcome goals
    • Access and participation in planned vocational rehabilitation services
    • Recognition of the role of formal or informal support systems/caregivers
  4. Budgetary limitations/least cost requirements

Details of the written report include

  • A summary of the limitations which indicate the need for modification. These include physical, cognitive, or environmental limitations, and consider the role of the formal or informal support systems.
  • Detailed recommendations including justifications of the need for structural modifications or equipment
  • Digital photographs of the current environment, with emphasis on the barriers to accessibility
  • Drawings of recommended structural modifications

Home Modification Project Management

Upon review of the home modification evaluation report, project management services can be provided. This includes:

  • Writing detailed construction specifications, suitable for soliciting bids from general contractors. This includes product and structural specifications, detailing dimensions, placement and installation methods of products or equipment to ensure “apples to apples” comparison of bids
  • Bid Solicitation. Ensures problem-solving before construction starts and that changes in scope must be pre-approved
  • Construction Oversight. Availability for consultation by contractor or client to address unforeseen changes
  • Interim and final inspections to ensure that completion of work was done according to local codes and ordinances; according to specifications written; according to quality workmanship standards; and to accomplish client’s goals

For more information about home modification services, please contact us.