Healthcare Educational Resources

HEALTHCARE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES SUMMARY 3

HealthcareEducational Resources

HealthcareEducational Resources Summary

Overthe United States, different countries have different ways ofhandling the special needs population. However, some of these waysare similar because of the assistive methods and policies they have,as well as the educational resources. The use of assistivetechnologies is the same in all the states despite the slightdifferences in the list of the equipment employed. A good example isPennsylvania and Tennessee that use computer aids and software thathelp the special needs population. However, there are slightdifferences in the equipment used by each of the states.Pennsylvania, South Dakota and Tennessee, all use modifiedtransportation equipment. However, the difference is thatPennsylvania uses adapted vehicles while Tennessee uses motorizedwheelchairs.

Atthe same time, most states provide comprehensive databases of theirservices to special needs groups as well as technologies. The stateof Pennsylvania uses the database named AHRQ, unlike the states ofSouth Dakota and Tennessee, which use a different system. ThePennsylvanian AHRQ is a searchable database full of the informationabout the assistive technology and educational resources. Inaddition, Pennsylvania has a federally funded program, PIAT, whichseeks to increase the awareness access and acquisition of assistivetechnologies in the state. This is unlike the states of South Dakotaand Tennessee that use a different system. At the same time,Pennsylvania, South Dakota and Tennessee, all use technology tofacilitate their services and keep track of the technologies adapted.

Despitethe similarities in the use of technology to develop assistivetechnologies, there are fundamental functional differences indifferent states. The difference in the provision of thetechnological assistive services is the details and the specificneeds solved by the technologies. While Pennsylvania uses acomprehensive database for the assistive technology services, SouthDakota does not have any assistive matrix. On the other hand, SouthDakota has a Nationally Certified Technology Specialist who evaluatesthe services needed in the state. This is done in through fourstatewide demonstration centers situated in the state.

Theeducational resources that each of the states have for the specialneeds population. Pennsylvania has the Intellectual DisabilityPrograms that seek to promote provision of educational servicesthrough the “gold book” understanding. Tennessee on the otherhand operates the Tennessee Family-to- Family Health InformationCenter. This is a center where Tennessee families with children withspecial needs requirement can share information relating to theirchallenges and needs, as well as know the services that areavailable. This way, the state trains the families and supports theprograms that seek to provide educational resources. In a similarway, South Dakota has the South Dakota Parent Connection, which is aneducational group for the parents to share educational resources.Additionally, the educational services lie with the Department ofHuman Services, which coordinates the services for the special needspopulation.

Theaccess of services by the special needs population is similar indifferent states, with slight differences in the states. Most of thestates have the same access points for the people with special needs.In Pennsylvania, web services and human service professionals are themain ways of accessing services. In South Dakota and Tennesseestates, the web platforms as well as the professional institutionsalso the majority of access points for the services. In addition,there are state departments that coordinate the access of theservices for the special needs population.