September 2, 2020
This past month REquipment Durable Medical Equipment (DME) Reuse Program hit an important milestone. Since our program was first piloted in 2013, we have now refurbished and delivered over $10 million worth of durable medical equipment to seniors, people with disabilities including children and veterans, and those with a temporary need throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
How many devices does this add up to?
5,535 power and manual wheelchairs, scooters, standers, lifts, rollators, bathroom devices, portable ramps, recreation equipment, and other types of DME have been distributed. Each has meant a Massachusetts resident was made safer and more independent at home and in their community.
Residents like the woman whose son called us desperate to obtain a manual wheelchair so she could get out of the hospital in advance of the Covid-19 epidemic. With our assistance, she was discharged the next day with a new-to-her manual chair.
Residents like the woman with a terminal condition whose daughter asked us for a power chair so her mother could get around her house and regain a sense of some control in her life. We provided the chair and her daughter let us know about the renewed independence her mother felt during the time she’d had left.
We’ve been humbled to help so many Massachusetts residents avoid institutionalization and help others transition home more quickly from a hospital or nursing home.
Some of our favorite successes, however, are hearing from residents who are using adaptive bikes or sports equipment for the first time. REquipment has made it possible for individuals with disabilities to get out with their family and friends and enjoy what it feels like to ride a bike and be a part of the group, boosting their quality of life and sense of well being.
So let’s celebrate! Not only have we improved lives, our program has also saved public and private insurers and those paying out of pocket, millions of dollars by giving valuable equipment a second life, and keeping it out of landfills.
In the words of Massachusetts Senate President Emerita Harriet Chandler, “REquipment is a gem of a program!”