Usage of assistive technology is increasingly common, with growth far exceeding demographic changes in the U.S. population. From 1980-1994, the U.S. population increased by 19.1%; however, the age-adjusted use of leg braces increased by 52.1%, walkers by 70.1%, and wheelchairs by 82.6%. Approximately one in four older adults use an assistive device, and one-third of those use more than one such device. These stats highlight the need for primary care providers and those working in long-term care settings to understand the options of assistive technology to help their patients maintain the highest level of independence, mobility, and dignity.
Here is a recent article on assistive technologies for mobility that ran in our sister publication, Clinical Geriatrics: Assistive Devices for Independence in the Elderly: A Case Series
Also check out this article from 2008 in Annals of Long-Term Care: Assistive Technology and Mobility Aids for the Older Patient with Disability
You might also enjoy this new blog entry from our blogger Laurie Blanchard: 10 Things You Can Do to Support Aging With Dignity and Independence