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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Pop-up proves high demand for assistive technology

Assistive Technology Australia (ATA) is one step closer to a permanent Independent Living Centre in the ACT, after being overwhelmed by demand at its pop-up clinic earlier in the week.

The pop-up centre was hosted at the University of Canberra’s (UC) Health Hub on Tuesday (10 November) presenting a range of assistive living technologies for seniors and people with disability.

ATA CEO Robyn Chapman said feedback through the pop-up clinic was positive.

“Demand for a service like this is very high in the ACT,” she said.

“We had more people at the pop-up clinic than we were expecting; and most people were saying it was wonderful as the community has not had anything like it since the ACT Independent Living Centre was closed.

“Topics ranged from people wanting accessible buses to gaming consoles for their children.”  

Assistive technology is vital to seniors or people living with a disability for independence and full participation in life, with ATA offering impartial advice for products available on the market.

The pop-up clinic was part of an ongoing partnership between UC and ATA, with the hopes pop-up clinics like the one held on Tuesday would lead to a more permanent arrangement.

“We’re excited that the pop-up clinic was well received. This is the start of regular outreach for the ACT and hopefully it will also pave the way for the development of a permanent Independent Living Centre for the Nation’s Capital,” Ms Chapman said.

The partnership with UC also gives Occupational Therapy students hands-on experience, with many partaking in internships through ATA.

Associate Professor Stephen Isbel, Discipline Lead of Occupational Therapy at The University of Canberra Hospital, said many OT students had also participated on the day.

“This kind of experience is invaluable and helps us to provide better training opportunities for our students, leading to increased community outcomes and employment pathways,” he said.  

The pop-up ran on Tuesday 10 November 9am-4pm in UC’s Health Hub.

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