FINDING INDEPENDENCE THROUGH TECHNOLOGY
David Maennle is an accomplished young man who directly benefits from assistive technology in North Carolina. David’s chosen lifestyle — living independently in the community with the help of technology — saves the State of North Carolina almost $80,000 per year.
David was born with an intellectual disability, but as his mother Becky says, “He is able to do everything that he puts his mind to. He just does it a bit differently.” David currently has a job and is saving for his dream of building his own log cabin. He rents his own apartment and is able to apply the independent living skills he learned at Western Carolina University.
The use of SimplyHome’s sensors and verbal prompts enable David to:
- Cook his own meals and be notified if he leaves the stove on.
- Complete a morning routine of self-care, eating breakfast, taking medication, and tidying up before going to work at a scheduled time.
- Receive a verbal reminder to close and lock the doors.
- Access help quickly if needed.
Increasing Independence in a Cost-Effective Way
The SimplyHome technology David uses has two components: an annual monitoring fee and a one-time fee for the technology itself:
- $779.40 annual monitoring fee
- $6,827 one-time cost for customized SimplyHome System
David’s use of this technology reduces his living costs, enabling him to take advantage of additional supports such as supported employment, in-home skill building and personal care for $80,055 per year. Altogether his living supports total $87,661.
If David were not using technology, he would not have access to these supports. Institutional home care costs would be $60,794 per year and group home rates would be $105,495 per year. That comes to a total of $166,290 per year, which nearly doubles the cost of living in his own home.
The chart below contrasts the annual costs for David’s supports if he were in a group home and receiving day supports, with the annual costs for his more independent lifestyle of living in his own apartment.
DAVID’S VISION FOR HIS LIFE
David lives a fully-immersed life on his own terms, including working for the local EMS, cooking his own meals, and saving for his “Vision”: building his own log cabin, driving his own red truck, and owning a blue-tick hound.
Without the assistance of technology, so much independence and integration into the community would not be possible.
To learn more about David’s story and to get a tour of his home, watch the “David’s Vision” video.
You can also learn more by checking out David’s Facebook page.
WHAT ABOUT FUNDING?
Funding is available for individuals in North Carolina to afford to live independently with the use of assistive technology. The NC Innovations Waiver provides funding to local management entities and managed care organizations. The services provided through the waiver empower individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to:
- Choose where they live
- Choose how they spend their time and what they do to be connected to the community
- Self-direct or manage their supports
- Support their own growth
- Obtain access to the adaptive technology they need to live in their community
- Individual cost limit / reimbursement rate in NC: $135k (maximum)
- Innovations Waiver cost limit / reimbursement rate for NC per individual: $60k
- Annual average cost of institutional care in NC: $120k
- As of October 2016:
- Waiver Slots: 12,488
- Current Wait List: 10,000 individuals
*From The Division of Medical Assistance, Community Based Services (North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services)
Want to explore other ways that technology can empower independence? Contact SimplyHome at 877.684.3581 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.