Environmental Control Units and Speech Generating Devices – AdaptABILITY is key
Whether someone is a individual with quadriplegia because of a spinal cord injury or debilitating disease such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or multiple sclerosis (MS), the key to independence is found in the adaptability of their environmental control unit (ECU) or speech generating device (SGD). The autonoME is a combined ECU and SGD with full augmentative and assistive communication (AAC) capabilities. Powered by the easy to learn and very popular Grid 3 software, the autonoME can be controlled using various input methods. Let’s take a closer look:
Individuals with use of their hands may prefer to operate the autonoME using its capacitive touch screen. The autonoME comes with a stylus, and the screen responds to both finger touch and the stylus, depending on the user’s preference.
The autonoME features a microphone so it can be controlled with vocal commands.
Sip and Puff
The sip and puff switch features a straw which allows users to activate the ECU / SGD switch by sipping and puffing to move across and down the screen.
Equipped with Eye Gaze, the autonoME’s commands can be activated by the user’s eyes. A camera tracks the pupils to move the cursor up, down, left and right.
This feature works much like Eye Gaze, tracking the movements of the users head to control the curser.
The autonoME is equipped with two switch input ports that allow for multiple switch options designed to accommodate different body movements. This enables the user to control the autonoME using one or more input methods such as sip and puff, grasp switches, micro switches and finger buttons and foot switches, among others. We will discuss scanning methods in a future blog
ASI understands that no two individual with quadriplegias have the same needs, so we customize our ECUs -including the autonoME – to fit each client. We work with individual with quadriplegias in hospitals, long-term care facilities and residential settings. And, we choose Grid 3 software because it is quick to learn, easy to use and updated on a regular basis.
Below is an article featuring a brave gentleman who battled ALS for 17 years. He lived in a long-term facility, and used eye tracking to connect with people, control his environment and even earn a college degree.