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Bathroom Modification Services
We have wide experience across both minor and major modifications and both simple and complex equipment prescription.
We are mobile across Newcastle, Port Stephens, the Central Coast and the Hunter Valley. Our Occupational Therapists visit people at their homes and support home modifications, assessments, report writing and ongoing therapy.
Community Therapy strives to make bathrooms accessible, safe and appropriate for our clients.
We have been supporting bathroom modifications since 2016.
Assistive Technology & Equipment for Bathrooms
In the wonderful modern age there is a very long list of suitable Assistive Technology, equipment, and modifications that can help people gain or increase their independence with activities of daily living within the bathroom.
One piece of equipment is the Shower Buddy. We have a whole podcast episode dedicated to the shower buddy and how it provide comfort and safety for users while not having to break the bank on a complete bathroom modification.
- Toilet aids
- Shower commodes
- Shower transfer benches
Medium Environmental Impact
- Extendable shower hoses
- Portable threshold ramps
- Doorway modifications
- Bathroom renovations
Complex Bathroom Modifications
- Full bathroom demolition and remodel
- Powered shower commodes (e. tilt in space, lifters)
- Full environmentals reviews, carer training, project management
How to Access Bathroom Modifications
Community Therapy welcomes all enquiries. We predominantly work with adults (over 18) living with a physical or neurological disability.
We specifically work with:
- NDIS participants
- Home care packages
- Short-term restorative care program providers
- Lifetime care and support
- Private paying clients
- Commonwealth home support program
The entire bathroom modification process is quite similar across all types of referrals and funding schemes. However, there are some differences in terms of the amount of report writing required between the funding models.
Typically, lifetime care and support and NDIS referrals require more time to perform because we are gaining multiple quotes and trials for pieces of equipment. It is our role to consider many options of modifications and equipment to meet the needs of the consumer and the operational guidelines of the funding scheme.
The assessment quality and ongoing support from our clinicians remains the same for all types of referrals.
Common Hazards in the Bathroom
People spend quite a lot of time each day in the bathroom! This can be with the activities of showering, toileting, and also personal hygiene activities such as brushing teeth.
There are many hazards in the bathroom, examples include:
- Slips & trips
- Sharp edges
- Floor thresholds
Falls prevention is a major consideration for bathroom environments. Fortunately, there are many ways a bathroom environment can be optimised to lower risks, as well as improve independence and function (i.e. automatic lighting).
Appropriate Referrals for Community Therapy
People require a bathroom assessment typically because they’re living with a disability or functional impairment, which is limiting or challenging their ability to move safely in the bathroom by themselves, or with someone’s assistance.
Community Therapy may help people with:
- Manual handling training
- Bathroom access, remodelling, safety rails, toilets, etc
- Ensuring equipment (i.e. wheelchairs) is compatible with the environment
- Transfer devices
There are challenges in terms of conducting a bathroom assessment to make sure that the appropriate recommendations’ equipment or modifications are made by the Occupational Therapist.
It is important that a comprehensive assessment is completed in a meaningful way that allows the person to describe in detail the factors that are important to them within the bathroom. This allows the Occupational Therapist to understand the movements that are required within the bathroom and the considerations for space and turning, seating options, and equipment recommendations that may be suitable.
Starting with Community Therapy
We’re really passionate about people being able to have accessible environments, so that they’re able to engage in normal activities of daily living within their homes, in particular, in and around the bathroom.
- We aim to help improve quality of life, comfort, independence and safety
- We are experienced with simple and complex home modifications
- We are locally owned and operated
- Our Occupational Therapists are university-trained
- We can work with any bathroom/building suppliers or as per our client’s preferences
What bathroom services are most common for Community Therapy?
A lot of the time people’s bathrooms are able to be made more accessible with simple pieces of equipment, over toilet aids and commodes for example.
In terms of home modifications, simple rail installations near toilets and in showers are quite common. However, everyone and every home is unique and we perform plenty of complex equipment prescriptions.
There are many different types of options to consider with making an environment more safe. This is not just in the bathroom, but across the whole house, so our Occupational Therapists will also consider lighting, walkways, stairs, kitchens, bedrooms and so forth.
What type of environments can Community Therapy operate in?
Community Therapy is a mobile provider, so we are able to visit all types of properties.
We typically are going into freestanding homes, into units and villas and apartments.
We also assist larger building projects, such as group homes, or even consulting for residential aged care facilities with equipment or modification needs that they may be requiring.
How do non ambulant patients access a bathroom, bath or shower?
For somebody that is unable to walk, there are options for increasing independence in the house, and also in the bathroom.
Some people may be able to functionally control a powered wheelchair, and this gives them access to moving around their home and into the bathroom.
Others may need assistance from someone else in a manual wheelchair, if they are unable to operate a powered wheelchair themselves.
When somebody is in a manual or powered wheelchair, unable to maintain a seating position or is bed bound, it’s important for us to assess the lifting equipment that will assist somebody to move from one surface to a piece of equipment.
Our Occupational Therapists will help the person/carers to identify appropriate locations and procedures for transfers to take place. We are mindful of privacy, dignity and the different types of environments that the bathroom is being used in.
How long do bathroom modifications take?
Modifications can be an extensive process depending on the funding scheme.
Our process of conducting our assessment, organising specifications for the recommended modifications, organising joint builder and equipment supplier consults, and submissions of the report to a funding scheme (i.e. NDIS) are typically performed in a number of weeks.
The process then moves to approval from a funding body, where it can take weeks to months, depending on many factors.
In the event a person is paying privating, this can be quicker and possibly performed within 1-2 month timeline.
What is the patient experience like?
Community Therapy is a fully mobile Allied Health provider, we are highly skilled in delivering various home modification services.
We’re aware that when visiting people’s homes, this may be a confronting experience for some.
After receiving a referral, our friendly administration team will contact you via preferred means, where we endeavour to start building a trusting relationship. This starts with our pre visit phone call, where we discuss our services and the person’s preferences.
Preferences may include days and times for our visit, or gender of a clinician that they may prefer. They may also have religious or cultural preferences for us to respect.
This promotes a supportive clinical experience, as when our clinicians arrive at the front door, consumers already know and expect that we are coming out and have trust that we are suitably qualified in coming out to their home.