Kentucky receives $71,000 grant from the Christopher Reeve Foundation to establish portable ramp loaner program
What Is It?
The Kentucky Assistive Technology Services Network, Centers for Independent Living, and the University of Kentucky have established a portable ramp loaner program through a grant from the Christopher Reeve Foundation High Impact Assistive Technology Grant Program. This program is expected to be rolled out after the start of the 2018 State Fiscal Year.
How Does it Work?
RampUP! Kentucky Can loan a portable ramp to any individual who is a resident of Kentucky and needs one. There is no cost and the portable ramp can be borrowed for 2 months or longer.
A portable ramp could allow an individual to leave hospitals and rehabilitation facilities to return to their homes as soon as possible, instead of waiting for a permanent ramp to be installed, reducing hospital stays.
Permanent/fixed ramps are expensive and even if an individual has the finances it could take several weeks to have it installed. For individuals who do not have the financial means, they would have to depend on a local volunteer group or family member with the skills and money to build the ramp. Again this could take several weeks. A wheelchair user may need a portable ramp when visiting a home/location that does not have ramp access. There are many situations when a portable ramp can be extremely helpful. However, a portable ramp will not work in every situation and it is up to the individual to make sure that it will work in their particular situation. The portable ramp must be used safely according to manufacture specifications.
What Types of Ramps are Available?
The portable ramps that are available for loan are lightweight aluminum, in lengths from 2 ft to 12 ft.
The styles are suitcase/single-fold from 2 ft to 6 ft and trifold/multifold from 5 ft to 12 ft. These ramps have a usable width of 29 inches, a nonskid surface and a weight capacity of 800lbs. These ramps do not have handrails.
Some distribution sites may have non-folding aluminum ramps with handrails and bariatric folding ramps with a usable width of 35 inches. These ramps also have a nonskid surface and a weight capacity of 800lbs.
RampUP! Kentucky can also provide a do-it-yourself portable ramp building kit (as long as funds are available) that will allow individuals to build their own ramps provided they can obtain materials and labor. The kit contains the design/instructions a top aluminum bracket and a bottom aluminum bracket. The individual would be responsible for providing the lumber and bolts etc. required (about $150) as well as the construction of the portable ramp. RampUP! Kentucky can only provide the kit.
How Can I Get a Ramp?
Ramp Up Kentucky! will be administered by the Kentucky Assistive Technology Services Network. The KATS Network is administratively located in the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation.
The portable ramps will be loaned through a network of eleven distribution sites These sites are located all across Kentucky.
For more information, including the locations of the distribution sites, call the KATS Network at (800) 327-5287 or visit the website at www.katsnet.org.
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