The Anatomy of the autonoME (Part 3)

When it comes to assistive technology for quadriplegics, the autonoME is the industry gold standard. Not only is the autonoME an environmental control unit, but it is also a speech generating device and computer with Windows 10 and internet access. These capabilities are combined in one single package, making the autonoME one of the industry’s most powerful tools for quadriplegics. The autonoME also features various input devices and methods, so it has become one of most sought after environmental control and communication devices for quadriplegics on the market today.

Touch

The autonoME is equipped with a capacitive touch screen that works with a finger touch or, if the user prefers, a stylus.

Voice

A directional microphone can be used to control the autonoME with voice commands.

Switch Scanning/Sip and Puff

This is a very popular feature, especially for a quadriplegic. Supplies and accessories like a sip and puff (dual switch) can be added and used to activate the switch and operate the unit.

Eye Tracking

An integrated or mounted camera tracks the user’s pupil and eye movements to control the mouse.

Head Tracking

This is popular for someone who has a debilitating disease or is a quadriplegic. Supplies and accessories like a head tracking camera can be mounted to the top of the monitor. A special metallic sticker is then placed on the user’s head, hat or eyeglasses, allowing them to control the mouse curser.

Want to learn more about why the autonoME is a preferred assistive technology for quadriplegics in both hospital and residential settings? If so, give us a call!

assistive technology

Assistive technology is anything designed to maintain and/or improve daily living for individuals with disabilities. This may include, but is not limited to, electronics, software, equipment, speech generating devices, environmental control units and mobility aids.

One of the most underserved communities is quadriplegics. While there seems to be plentiful resources for paraplegics and individuals with varying degrees of paralysis or disability, quadriplegic supplies, tools for quadriplegics and communication devices for quadriplegics can sometimes be difficult to identify and locate.

Accessibility Services, Inc. specializes in assistive technology for quadriplegics and individuals with debilitating diseases.  An example of one of the tools for quadriplegics that we offer is the autonoME speech generating device/environmental control unit. The autonoME is one of the premier communication devices for quadriplegics.  Not only is it user-friendly, but it can operate using different input methods.  Eye gaze, head tracking, and sip and puff are among the accessories and tools for quadriplegics that the autonoME can accommodate.

Environmental control is also an extremely important assistive technology for quadriplegics.  The autonoME can turn on lights, make telephone calls, control the television, adjust the bed, turn on fans and more.  Users can easily use the autonoME as a computer to surf the internet, post to social media, make videos, take photos, play games, etc.

When it comes to assistive technology for quadriplegics, the autonoME is one of the most reliable and best speech generating device/environmental control unit on the market.  Give us a call to learn more!

custom environmental control unit

We’ve been discussing how the autonoME is used by individuals affected by different conditions and diseases.  Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is our focus for this month.

MS is disease of the central nervous system that causes the immune system to damage myelin (the protective coating surrounding the nerve fibers.) This damage ultimately results in scarring (sclerosis) throughout multiple areas of the body. Though the disease can affect anyone of any age, it primarily strikes women between the ages of 20-40.  While there are risk factors associated with MS, a definitive cause has not been identified.

Some people with MS exhibit no outward symptoms, while others are clearly debilitated by the disease.  There are four different types of MS – Clinically Isolated, Relapsing-Remitting (most common), Secondary Progressive and Primary Progressive.  Accessibility Services, Inc. has served many clients with Secondary Progressive and Primary Progressive MS, providing them with a custom environmental control unit and speech generating device to help them re-gain independence.

The autonoME is unique in that we developed it to be both a custom environmental control unit and speech generating device integrated into one convenient package.  We can equip it to fit any type and degree of MS. Most importantly, it is designed to accommodate any progression of the disease. A client who is unable to walk but able to use their hands may benefit from the touchscreen, whereas someone who is immobile may be best suited for eye gaze or head tracking.

The autonoME’s full augmentative and alternative (AAC) and environmental control capabilities make it a preferred choice for individuals with MS and their caregivers. If you or a loved one are affected by MS, we can help!  Give us a call to learn more.

tools for quadriplegics

The autonoME is one of the industry’s most respected communication devices for quadriplegics.  What makes the autonoME so attractive is its combined augmentative and alternative (AAC) and environmental control capabilities. We’ve been taking a closer look at specific features users, caregivers and professionals find most beneficial.  Below are three more reasons why the autonoME is so popular in both residential and hospital settings.

User-Friendly Interface

Ease is important when it comes to tools for quadriplegics.  The autonoME boots up at the Home menu and features a user-friendly interface consisting of Menus (i.e. grid pages) with Commands (cells).  Not only are the Menus and Commands ideal for users, but hospital staff and caregivers also find the autonoME’s interface simple to learn so they can assist the individual should the need arise.

Full Environmental Control

Not only is the autonoME a preferred speech generating device (SGD), but it is also capable of environmental control.  This is especially important in a hospital ECU because it not only helps patients re-gain independence, but also frees up hospital staff to spend more time concentrating on medical care. Environmental control features include the ability to operate the hospital bed, turn on lights, use the telephone with privacy microphone and privacy speaker and control the television.  It even has nurse call integration.

User Adjustable Settings

What makes the autonoME such a desired assistive technology for quadriplegics (especially as a hospital ECU) is the fact that it is so easy for users to adjust and operate.  The autonoME is equipped with a number of user adjustable settings including scan speeds, voice outputs, and even self-calibration when using accessory kit Intelligaze camera for input.

Next month, we will highlight a few more features that make the autonoME such a sought after environmental control unit / speech generating device.  In the meantime, if you are interested in learning more about the autonoME, feel free to contact us.  We would love to talk with you!

speech generation device (SGD)

Over the next few months, we will be featuring how the autonoME is used by individuals affected by different diseases and conditions.  This month, we will discuss amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

ALS is a neurogenerative disease affecting the brain and spinal cord nerve cells.  It is progressive and results in the inability for the brain to control muscle movement, which eventually leads to loss of speech and lack of ability to move, eat and breath.  Unfortunately, there is still no cure for ALS.

The autonoME is an integrated environmental control unit (ECU) / speech generation device (SGD) with full augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) capabilities.  One of the features that makes the autonoME ideal for individuals with ALS is its ability to accommodate multiple input methods.  This is extremely important as the disease progresses.  For instance, a person with ALS may initially be able to use touch for commands.  Once their sense of touch becomes compromised by the ALS, they can still control the autonoME using alternate input methods such as eye gaze, sip and puff or eye tracking.

Overall, the autonoME helps individuals with ALS become more independent by allowing them to communicate using AAC and control their environment, including lights, doors, fans and television sets.  The autonoME can even be customized to allow individuals to access the Internet, make phone calls, send text messages, take photos, play games and more.

Are you or a loved one facing ALS?  Or, are you a professional who works with ALS patients?  If so, please give us a call to learn more about how the autonoME custom environmental control unit / speech generating device can help improve overall quality of life for both the individual with ALS and their caregivers.

ECU unit for hospital

(Part 1)

The autonoME is a custom environmental control unit / speech generating device that can be used in both hospital and residential settings.  As a hospital ECU, the autonoME not only helps patients gain independence and the ability to control their environment, but it also frees up staff time that can then be dedicated to patient medical care.

Spinal cord injury units throughout the country are equipped with the autonoME. We will be posting several articles over the next few months which outline why the autonoME is a preferred ECU unit for hospital settings. Let’s take a closer look at the anatomy of the autonoME.

All-in-one

The autonoME is one of the most ideal ECU units for hospitals because of its all-in one features and comprehensive capabilities.  Not only is the autonoME a full environmental control unit, but it is also capable of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC).  Couple this with the fact that it is also a computer equipped with the Windows operating system and you have the perfect all-in-one ECU / AAC solution!

Retrofitting capabilities

The autonoME is a custom environmental control unit that can be retrofitted into existing infrastructure.  Cables and clutter are eliminated as Accessibility Services Inc. (ASI) has manufactured a convenient wall box that holds all of the necessary components.  When it comes to new construction installation, we can serve as part of the planning team.

Next month, we continue to examine the anatomy of the autonoME and what makes it a perfect ECU unit for hospital settings. Want to learn more about the autonoME?  Give us a call for a complimentary consultation!

Are you either preparing for or getting stared with eye gaze?  If so, Look to Learn software is a must!  If you are using an autonoME speech generating device/ECU in hospital or home, Look to Learn software offers an excellent platform to help you master and fine tune eye gaze access. Let’s take a closer look at some of its most prominent features:

  • More than 40 activities designed to help users learn and practice eye gaze.
  • Explore – Look to Learn encourages the user to utilize the entire screen
  • Target – Improves eye gaze accuracy
  • Control – Helps the user fine tune and better control eye gaze access
  • Developed with the input of teachers and therapists, Look to Learn Scenes and Sounds features 26 activities designed to help teach valuable skills.

Best of all, Look to Learn software is customizable to you.  Look to Learn software allows you to load your own images and videos for use with the activities.  It is the perfect addition to any eye gaze equipped ECU in hospital or residential settings.

Grid 3 Software – The Gold Standard in Augmentative and Alternative CommunicationAccessibility Services, Inc. is proud to offer Grid 3 software – the gold standard in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) – with the products we offer.  Whether you are considering a Grid Pad or a custom environmental control unit (ECU) / AAC package such as the autonoME,  you can count on Grid 3 software to deliver advanced features and optimal performance.

Assistive technology for quadriplegics and adaptive equipment for quadriplegics have come a long way over the years.  The autonoME – powered by Grid 3 software  – is one of the most advanced communication devices for quadriplegics on the market today, which is probably why it is considered a preferred communication device/ECU in hospital and residential settings. Let’s take a look at what makes Grid 3 software so versatile and useful when it comes to AAC:

  1. Text communication – Grid 3 software allows users to easily access text communication options. It comes with more than 5000 pre-loaded sentences as well as the ability to add your own.
  2. Symbol communication – Similar to text communication, symbol communication allows users to use symbols vs. text to communicate.
  3. Access options – Communication devices for quadriplegics should have access options to accommodate different levels and types of disabilities. Grid 3 software integrates with eye gaze, switches, sip and puff, touch screens and more.
  4. Grid sets and accessible apps – Assistive technology for quadriplegics should allow users to accomplish everyday tasks. Grid 3 software has a plethora of downloadable grid sets and accessible apps that allow users make a phone call, send an e-mail, play games, send a text, take and share photos, browse the Internet, play music and games, watch videos, etc.
  5. Computer control – Being able to use a computer is one of the most requested options when it comes to adaptive equipment for quadriplegics. Grid 3 software allows persons with quadriplegia and other disabilities to access Window based software and applications and grid sets for work, school or home.

Want to learn more about how Grid 3 software is used to power our signature autonoME ECU/speech generating device?  Give us a call and one of our experts will be happy talk with you.

We have been highlighting various types of jobs for quadriplegics. This month, we will take a look at customer service careers.

Customer services jobs provide excellent employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. In fact, quadriplegic assistive technologies including environmental control unit (ECU) devices and a speech generating device have made it possible for persons with quadriplegia to do more than ever before! The autonoME is an integrated, custom environmental unit and speech generating device that can be personalized to each individual.

On-Site Customer Service Jobs for Quadriplegics
ECU devices have made it possible for persons with quadriplegia to become gainfully employed as on-site customer service representatives. In cases where speech is a challenge, a speech generated device can be added for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). Some businesses have a customer service desk where employees answer questions and resolve issues. Others have customer service representatives on the “floor” who can be called upon to answer questions at any time.

Telephone/Virtual Customer Services Jobs for Quadriplegics
ECU devices and/or a speech generating device can help persons with quadriplegia perform the duties of a telephone and/or virtual customer service representative. There are many of these jobs available that can be performed in the comfort of your own home with a telephone line, computer and Internet connection. Quadriplegic assistive technologies including a custom environmental control unit and speech generated device can be implemented to make using a telephone and computer possible.

While the requirements vary for different businesses, the basic requirements for customer service jobs include a general knowledge about the company’s products and/or services, ability to communicate with customers, willingness to resolve customer complaints and a positive, welcoming attitude. Equipped with ECU devices and/or a speech generating device, persons with quadriplegia can excel in customer service careers!

What Can an ECU Do for YouEnvironmental control units (ECU), including hospital ECU devices, are designed to give individuals with disabilities, including quadriplegics, freedom to control their surroundings. Custom environmental control units are specially designed to meet the needs of each individual. Both hospital ECU devices and residential ECU devices provide a plethora of benefits for both users and caregivers alike.  Let’s take a closer look at some of the features of residential and hospital ECU devices:

  • Nurse / caregiver call button
  • Room control – lights, television, bed, etc.
  • Basic telephone functions
  • Windows-based computer access
  • Internet access
  • Entertainment, including online books and games
  • Photos and selfies

If speech generation is also needed, the autonoME is an integrated environmental control unit and speech generating device for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC).  It can be customized with input devices to accommodate different levels of disability:

  • Voice – a directional microphone for flexibility and convenience
  • Touch – Capacitive touch screen and stylus pen
  • Switch Scanning – Single and dual switch sip and puff; ability to move down and across screen
  • Eye Tracking – move curser by staring into the camera and using your eyes
  • Head Tracking – move curser by moving your head up, down, left or right

Accessibility Services, Inc. (ASI) understands everyone’s needs are different, which is why we customize our residential and hospital ECU devices and autonoME packages to accommodate specific needs. In fact, the autonoME is becoming one of the most popular speech generating and hospital ECU devices on the market today.  We have installed units in several Veteran’s Administration hospital and private hospitals throughout the country, including a children’s specialty hospital.

Contact ASI to learn more about how our ECU devices and autonoME package can help you or a loved one become more independent.