In my opinion, all architectural companies need to have a wheelchair bound person working for them, This person is essential for them to be able to make sure that there are at least some already built houses that are accessible. Why should a disabled person have to be put in a nursing home because they or their family is unable to afford to buy land and have an accessible home built? Why can’t it be a requirement that every new subdivision have a certain number of accessible houses that have to be built. This means accessible bathrooms with roll in showers and grab bars all around the shower and the toilet area as well as sinks at a correct height for a chair to fit underneath them. The kitchens need to have the appliances low enough for the disabled person to use them, as well as the sink being lower and having a spray hose on the faucet, cabinets and countertops need to be lower and have open space for the wheelchair at the bottom. There needs to be an automatic dishwasher. The laundry room and washer and dryer need to be accessible as well.
The washer and dryer need to have doors that open in the front with controls that are accessible from the front as well. Appliance companies need to take the wheelchair bound person into consideration when designing their appliances. Don’t get me wrong, but I just think that there needs to be accessible options for those that need them. I know that not all people are disabled, but there are many that are, and more and more becoming that way everyday.
Our population is living longer and longer with the advancements in medicine that we have today. They are also able to stay in their own homes longer for the same reason. Many medical machines that used to be available only in medical facilities as in patient recipients are available for home use today. This helps to alleviate the need for away from home admissions and treatments. There are numerous home health agencies that offer a wide variety of medical service in the home. These services can range from simple activities of daily living (ADL’s as they are commonly called), such as bathing and dressing the person to light housekeeping like doing dishes and laundry, on up to advanced skilled nursing care that may include IV’s, and wound care to doing medical treatments with machines that are now accessible for such home usage.
All of the things mentioned above need to be taken into consideration when building accessible homes. In addition, these homes also need to have wider doors to be able to accommodate hospital beds and therapy equipment. They need to have a higher power availability. There may be many different machines that are necessary, for the disabled person’s care, that will need the extra power. Along with needing more power availability, of necessity, there will have to be more power outlets to plug these machines into. No matter how many surge protectors you may have, there is a limit as to how much power is available for the house as a whole to be able to consume. Once this limit is reached spontaneous combustion may result if there is even a small spark of any kind.
In doing this post, I don’t mean to sound like all doom and gloom, I am only trying to point out as many extra accommodations that a disabled person may need as I can think of. There would be nothing worse than moving into what a person thinks is an accessible home only to find out there is not enough power to operate the necessary machines, there are not enough outlets in the room to plug in all the necessary machines, and the doors are not wide enough to allow for a hospital be to be moved into the bedroom and therefore it has to be set up in the living room or the dining room. For a person to think that they have found the perfect accessible house, only to find out that these things are not accessible, would almost make someone want to just sit down and cry.
I know many of these things because I am disabled myself. Granted I do not need extra power to my apartment, but I could stand to have some more outlets for my hospital bed, my nebulizer, my CPAP machine, the CD player, my clock and my fans, a nite lite, a lamp, to charge my cell phone, and of course for my TV, along with it’s additional machines, such as the DVD/VCR player, and the converter box. I do have surge protectors for these machines, and unplug them whenever a bad storm hits so that there is no way that lightning can strike them if they are unplugged.
At this time, I cannot think of anything else that needs to be included. If by chance I do think of anything else, I will update the post and make a special note of the updates.