The Vision Technology Service is a Regional Assessment Centre for High Technology Vision Aids for the Assistive Devices Program, a funding program run by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
What do we do?
Introduce you to technical solutions to address the reading and writing challenges faced by individuals with low vision, blindness and/or multiple disabilities.
The Assessment Process
An individual assessment will include:
- Identifying difficulties experienced in reading and writing encountered in personal independence needs, school or work productivity and leisure activities. For example, if you find any of the following tasks difficult, technology may help!
- Reading books, magazines, newspapers
- Reading financial statements
- Writing letters and emails
- Providing comprehensive trials with appropriate technologies to compensate for these challenges.
- Providing handouts, a summary report and funding documentation to support equipment purchase and training.
What Types of Technology can help?
- Closed Circuit Televisions (CCTV's) - simple magnification devices which assist in reading by enlarging items up to 40 times on a monitor.
- Computers with Screen Reading and/or Screen Magnification software - enable people to write, edit, manage finances and access the Internet.
- Scanners with special software that will read printed material out loud, such as schoolwork, magazines and books.
- Braille Displays and Portable Notetaking Devices - to allow access to information when and how it is needed.
Is there funding assistance available?
Yes! Funding assistance may be available from the following Provincial Government programs:
- Assistive Devices Program (ADP)
- Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)
- Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities (ACSD)
- Ontario Works
- Department of Veteran's Affairs (DVA)
Ontario residents are eligible for a portion of the assessment fee and the equipment costs covered through the Assistive Devices Program (ADP). Eligible clients are those who are unable to perform every day age-related visual tasks in spite of conventional medical, surgical and/or routine refractive interventions (such as glasses). Clients who also present with physical and/or cognitive disability with vision loss can be seen at Vision Technology Service. Trials and recommendations can be made for alternative computer access, such as voice recognition or alternative keyboards.
To qualify, you must have a referral from your eye or family doctor, or a vision report dated within the past 6 months. This must include a diagnosis of your condition and a record of your visual acuity. For those who are financially assisted with the assessment fee by ODSP, Ontario Works or any other government assistance, proof of registration is required at the time of your initial assessment.
Where can this technology be purchased?
There are many vendors of adaptive technology for people with low vision or blindness. Please refer to SNOW's Assistive Technology glossary for AT manufacturers and/or vendors as well as the list of Ontario vendors for the Assistive Devices Program.
- Website accessibility review and training
- Student technology assessments for Boards of Education
- Seminars for students, parents and alumni
- Manufacturers Equipment Testing
- Assessments for individuals with multiple disabilities and Deaf/Blindness
- Referrals within the Medical and Low Vision/Blind Community
Who are We?
Our professional staff of Occupational Therapists are registered authorizers with the Assistive Devices Program. Authorizers at the Vision technology Service facilitate complex integration needs with alternative access equipment for individuals with physical disabilities.
205 Richmond St. W., 2nd Floor
Toronto, Ontario, M5V 1V3