Occupational Therapy in housing
The Occupational Therapy Service assesses and identifies the need for housing adaptations which help to address difficulties a disabled person may be experiencing in the home environment.
Such works will involve changing/adapting the home to overcome environmental barriers, thereby promoting safety and independence. Examples include minor adaptations such as grab rails, stair rails etc. or major adaptations such as ground floor extensions to provide facilities on ground floor level.
Although the occupational therapy service identifies the need for adaptations, completion of the work is dependent on ownership of the property. If service users own or rent their home privately then generally minor works are provided by the Trust through Estate Services. Major works are processed through the Disabled Facilities Grant managed by the Northern Ireland Housing Executive. This is a means tested process which will consider the disabled persons income to determine eligibility for assistance.
If service users live in social sector housing e.g. NIHE or Housing Association property, then recommended works, both minor and major, are completed by their housing provider. There is also a list of minor works which housing providers can complete without the need for an occupational therapy assessment or recommendation. For details social housing tenants should discuss this with their provider/landlord.