Achievement through Technology: Real People, Real Stories, Real Success!
The following two stories highlight how the services of Arizona Loan$ for Assistive Technology (AzLAT) benefits Arizonans who need funding to buy assistive technology.
K.’s Story – Affordable Financing
K. is a 45 year old woman employed as a dispatcher. She has a nerve and muscle disease that has caused severe nerve damage, pain and inability to walk even with a cane or walker for more than very short distances. The disease has markedly altered her independence and her significant other was concerned about her falling. K. wanted to be able to go to the mall with her family and to take her dogs out for walks. She applied for and was approved for an AzLAT loan of $1521.25 to purchase a sport-type scooter. The payments of $65.58 for 24 months were affordable for the family’s annual income of $32,640. The interest rate was 3.25%*. K. informed us that the scooter has made a big difference in her work and she enjoys being able to participate with her family on outings.
The type of scooter K. purchased can be disassembled for transport in her vehicle. However, she discovered that this was too physically demanding. Acquiring a vehicle lift was the solution to this problem. She applied for and was again approved for a second AzLAT loan to purchase a pre-owned vehicle lift that attached to her car, making it much easier for her to independently transport the scooter for use at work. Having the scooter at her job allowed her to be more mobile while conserving her energy. The lift cost $1385.00 and her combined monthly payments for both assistive technology items total $94.23. K. told us that the AzLAT loans gave her the ability to purchase the assistive technology she needed to achieve her goals of safe and independent community mobility, participation in family activities and to support continued employment.
D.’s Story - More Than Just Financing …
A local home health occupational therapist (OT) contacted AzTAP to consult with an assistive technology (AT) specialist about D., a 76 year old woman who was not able to independently transfer from her power wheelchair to her bed. She also had skin integrity issues that were being made worse by the sliding effects of her caregiver-assisted transfers. Both the OT and D. were interested in having guidance to identify assistive technology (AT) options that would provide safety, independence and prevention of skin breakdowns during transfers.
After a home visit to review her transfer needs and discuss her long term goals, D., her OT and the AzTAP AT Specialist, decided that a ceiling mounted track lift system was the best option to allow her to meet her goals for safe and independent transfers. Following the home visit, the AT Specialist referred D. to a local vendor who sells and installs this type of lift. New lifts generally cost in the range of $7000. Fortunately for D., the vendor had a gently used/pre-owned system with the features she needed, priced at $4500. However, even at the lower amount, D. was not able to afford the lump sum cost and did not have other resources for coverage.
But D. had heard about AzLAT loan program and was interested in applying for a loan to pay for the system. With a written price quote in hand, she submitted her AzLAT loan application. Her request was approved a week later for 36 monthly payments of $132.74. The interest rate was 3.25%*. With her annual income of $41,255.88, this payment plan was affordably within her budget.
As soon as the loan closed, D. scheduled an appointment with the vendor and the lift was successfully installed in her home. The process from start to finish was completed in less than a month. After the system’s installation, the OT and the AzTAP AT Specialist made a follow-up home visit to fine tune her use of the system. D. is now well on her way towards meeting her long term goals of independent transfers. The services provided by AzTAP, the team approach to the assistive technology consultation and the financial loan program were key to this successful outcome.
* AzLAT interest rates are based on the prime rate in effect at the time of the closing and may be higher or lower for other borrowers. Interest rates are fixed for the life of the loan and there are no prepayment penalties if the borrower pays off the loan ahead of schedule.