Learn More About Available Options
The following sources may pay for certain home modifications and assistive technology:
Private Pay: Expenses for some assistive technology and home modifications may be paid out-of-pocket.
Individuals with Medicare Part B, also known as medical insurance, can cover a portion of the costs associated with assistive technology under the Durable Medical Equipment (DME) benefit. The equipment must be medically necessary and prescribed by a doctor.
The assistive technology must meet the following criteria:
- Be durable and able to withstand repeated use
- Be used for a demonstrated medical reason
- Be used in the home
- Have an expected lifetime of at least three years
- Not usually be useful to someone who isn’t sick or injured.
Depending on the equipment or technology needed, the user may need to rent or buy it from an approved supplier. Medicare will cover up to 80% of allowable expenses. The individual will need to pay the remaining 20% cost.
Equipment covered include:
- Canes (except for canes for the blind), crutches and walkers
- Commode chairs
- Manual wheelchairs and power mobility devices
Information and a list of qualified equipment are available on the Medicare website.
Medicaid may also cover the costs of certain DME. Similar to Medicare, individuals in need of assistive technology will need a recommendation from their doctor for one or more items and then a written prescription.
Some equipment for moving around include canes, crutches, walkers and wheelchairs.
Some equipment for care at home include:
- Heat lamps or pads
- Hospital beds
- Special toilet seats
- Machines to make breathing easier
Most DMEs are acquired through a Medicaid-enrolled medical equipment supplier. While the individual’s doctor may recommend a supplier, they have the freedom of choice to select a supplier. Medicaid will only cover DME from suppliers who are enrolled and that the Department of Social Services (DSS) considers medically necessary. Additional items may be approved for coverage on an individual basis.
The medical equipment supplier will help individuals seek DSS approval for DME request items not routinely covered by Medicaid.
For more information, visit the Department of Social Services website. Download the DME brochure for commonly asked questions and steps to acquiring assistive technology. Call 1-800-859-9889 for a list of enrolled medical equipment suppliers.
Home modifications referred to as Environmental Accessibility Adaptations within Medicaid, and assistive technology may also be covered under the following Medicaid waiver and services:
There are home modifications assistance programs and opportunities available to veterans from both the Veterans Administration and from nonprofit and for-profit organizations. For more information on the supports available, visit the Veterans Home Accessibility Grants and Programs page.
Other Public and Private Supports
Department of Aging and Disability Services (ADS)
The Department of Aging and Disability Services provides services to individuals with disabilities who need assistance in maintaining or achieving their full potential for self-direction, self-reliance and independent living.
The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services include assistance with accessing assistive technology and serves people with all disabilities except legal blindness who are served by the Board of Education and Services for the Blind (BESB).
Additionally, ADS operates the CT Tech Act Program. CTTAP provides access to assistive technology through low-interest loans, device loans, device demonstrations and an AT reutilization program where used AT is refurbished and resold. The AT reutilization program is operated by NEAT Center at Oakhill.
ADS also maintains a list of resources for those in need of hearing aids.
Learn More: For more information, visit the Department of Aging and Disability Services website.
Disability Specific Medical or Disability Grants
There are a few organizations that provide grants for home accessibility modifications. Typically, these grants are available for people with a specific medical or disability situation. For more information, visit the Specific Medical and Disability Situation Financial Help page.