Funding for Assistive Technology
Webinar Series: Getting Durable Medical Equipment Through Pennsylvania Medical Assistance Managed Care
Pennsylvania's Initiative on Assistive Technology and the Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania are offering a free, four-part webinar series called "Getting Durable Medical Equipment (DME) through Pennsylvania Medical Assistance (Medicaid) Managed Care" in the fall of 2013 and spring of 2014.
The webinars are for persons with disabilities, their family members, advocates, and professionals. Amy Goldman, Co-Executive Director of the Institute on Disabilities and a licensed speech-language pathologist, and Chava Kintisch, Staff Attorney and Assistive Technology Project Director, Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania, are among the featured speakers.
The first two webinars were recorded and are linked below:
Webinar 1: "Getting Durable Medical Equipment from Medical Assistance Managed Care: The Basics"
- Identifies the durable medical equipment that is covered under a Medical Assistance managed care health plan
- Discusses how to seek prior authorization
- Introduces steps for appealing a denial
Recorded: Thursday, September 12, 2013.
Webinar 2: "Getting Your Communication or Mobility Equipment: Evaluations"
- Introduces how evaluations for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) and powered mobility devices are covered under Medical Assistance managed care health plans.
- Identifies qualified providers for evaluation and recommended services
- Provides other resources for information and AAC funding
Recorded: Tuesday, September 17, 2013. (Webinar begins at about 1:00 minute into the recording.)
Check back soon for the dates for the Spring 2014 webinars.
About Funding for Assistive Technology
Finding funding for assistive technology (AT) devices and services can be challenging. You may not be eligible for a program because of age, income or type of disability; or the device you need or want may not be covered by the program for which you DO qualify. You may need to find assistance from several programs, and put those resources together in order to come up with the funding for the AT you need. PIAT's Information and Assistance may be able to help you find funding resources for the assistive technology you need.
Pennsylvania's Initiative on Assistive Technology (PIAT) provides information and assistance to individuals with disabilities and their families who are searching for funding for assistive technology they need and cannot afford. PIAT can help you work through the maze of health insurances, public programs including "waivers," reuse programs, cash loan programs, and non-governmental funding sources to determine which ones might help. When needed, the AT Funding Coordinator can help make inquiries, complete applications, write letters of need or provide examples of "good" letters of medical necessity, and refer individuals for assistance through the appeals process.
Information and assistance is provided by telephone or email through PIAT's central office. For individuals who live outside of southeastern Pennsylvania, your Assistive Technology Resource Center (ATRC) may help you find additional information regarding local resources for assistive technology.
For more information regarding funding for assistive technology, as well as general information about assistive technology devices and services, contact PIAT's Information and Assistance office at ATinfo@temple.edu, 800-204-7428 (voice), or 866-268-0579 (TTY), contact
Voice: 800-204-PIAT (7428), in state
TTY: 866-268-0579, in state
Watch this webpage for additional publications about funding sources for assistive technology devices and services.
PIAT collaborates with the following agencies to assist individuals and families obtain the assistive technology they need.
The Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation (PATF)—www.patf.us is a non-profit organization that offers low-interest cash loans with extended repayment terms. For loans greater than $1,000, the interest rate is currently 3.75%, subject to change. For AT that is less than $1,000, loans are offered at 0% interest with reasonable repayments amounts and periods; and low-income individuals may be eligible for a grant for part of the cost. PATF also provides information about other potential funding sources and free consumer credit counseling. For more information about PATF and its programs contact:
Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation
1004 West 9th Avenue, 1st Floor
King of Prussia, PA 19406
Voice/TTY Toll-Free: 888-744-1938
Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania
The Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania (DRN) is a non-profit statewide public interest law firm that provides legal assistance and other services to individuals with disabilities, their organizations, their families, and their advocates. DRN's main purpose is to advocate for the civil rights of persons with mental and physical disabilities, especially their right to live as integral parts of their communities. DRN works to ensure that people with disabilities have equal and unhindered access to employment, transportation, public accommodations, and government services; to enforce their rights to vocational rehabilitation, habilitation, post-secondary education, health, and other services (including assistive technology); and to protect them from abuse and neglect. DRN identifies systemic issues which are important to people with disabilities and seeks change and reform through litigation, administrative advocacy, and public education. DRN has offices in Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Pittsburgh.
Contact DRN's Intake Team:
Client Assistance Program (CAP)
The Client Assistance Program (CAP) offers assistance to those having difficulty obtaining assistive technology from the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), including the Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (BVRS) and Bureau of Blindness and Visual Services (BBVS). CAP services include information and referral, mediation/negotiation, and assistance with appeals.
Contact CAP at:
Client Assistance Program
Center for Disability Law and Policy
1617 JFK Boulevard, Suite 800
Philadelphia, PA 19103