Free home adaptations to help those living with disabilities

editorial image

People with disabilities living in private housing could get free adaptations to their homes.

They can now apply for the full cost of stair lifts and modular access ramps (up to £7,000 of Government funding) to help them access their home. The change to discretionary disabled facilities grants runs until April 1, 2019.

South Kesteven District Council cabinet member for housing, Coun Nick Neilson, said: “Work like this can increase independence, help faster discharge from hospital, reduce the need for support from social care and health services and also prevent further deterioration in people’s existing conditions.

“If someone has a referral from the occupational therapist for a stair lift or modular access ramp, they would previously have been means tested, which could mean they have to make a contribution towards the cost of the work or they may not be eligible for any assistance.

“We know that people can fail the Government set means test and yet still not have the money to pay for this work, which is why we’re changing the way this works.

“Stair lifts and modular access ramps help to support their independence, prevent falls and in turn reduce avoidable hospital admissions or facilities a timely hospital discharge.

“These relatively low cost adaptations, which can be quickly installed, do not add financial value to the home and in some instances the local land charge deters disabled people from making an application.”

South Kesteven District Council processes over 80 applications for help each year. Each must be supported by a recommendation from the resident’s Lincolnshire County Council occupational therapist to help inform a decision on whether the work is necessary and appropriate for their needs.