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The Viscardi Center

Nathaniel H. Kornreich Technology Center

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Opened in July 1996, the Nathaniel H. Kornreich Technology Center (KTC) at The Viscardi Center is a hands-on laboratory where education, evaluation, and training services are offered to children and adults with disabilities, as well as those who require assistive devices due to illness, injury or the natural aging process. Through the use of technology-based solutions, KTC is dedicated to promoting the full participation and independence of people with disabilities, and others, by enhancing their capabilities in school, at work, at home, and in the community.

KTC also offers workstation evaluations for employers who want to reduce their workers’ compensation costs and keep employees working. The Return to Work (RTW) aspect allows employees who were injured to return to work safely and productively.

In addition to individuals, Kornreich Technology Center supports organizations in accommodating people with disabilities in their roles as students, as employees, within their families, and within their communities.  These include school districts, public and private employers, and community services such as museums and parks, benefit from judicious use of technology.  Kornreich Technology Center assists these organizations through the process of choosing and implementing solutions and training professionals to work with people with disabilities.

KTC is staffed by a professional team of multiple disciplines who have specialized in assistive technology for people with disabilities and the aging populations and provides:

Assistive Technology Evaluations 
Training 
Consultation 
Educational Services 
Equipment Leasing 
Return to Work Initiatives and Reduction of Workers’ Compensation 

Assistive Technology Evaluations
The Kornreich Technology Center professionals assist in selecting assistive technology that meets  individual needs in a variety of areas, including:

Improving quality of life
Return to work
Augmentative/alternative communication
Computer access
Workstation design

People of all ages and a broad range of disabilities come to the Center to discuss their needs and preferences with an experienced assistive technology specialist. The  KTC  demonstration area allows for “hands on” experience with the devices, software, and techniques geared toward using their unique combination of abilities to address those needs within their personal environment and lifestyle. The specialist offers advice and guidance as needed to help each person make informed choices and realistic plans. Kornreich Technology Center professionals also travel into the community to provide services.

The result of an individual evaluation is recommendations, which may be for no technology at all, for simple devices or techniques, for sophisticated technologies, or most commonly, for a combination of low-tech and high-tech solutions to the problems identified during the evaluation process. Recommendations generally go beyond equipment to include positioning, postural training, ergonomic assessments/solutions, software, adaptive techniques, and training related to any of the recommendations. 

The Kornreich Technology Center does not provide or sell any products, but instead gives detailed information on recommended products and where to procure them.  We also may provide the necessary devices through a leasing program when budgets are limited.

For the aging population, one of KTC’s most commonly accessed services is assistance in understanding the use of, and eliminating the fear of, today’s changing communication devices such as:

Smart phones
Tablets
Laptops
Desktops
Use of various operating systems

For learn more, or schedule an assistive technology evaluation, contact croth@viscardicenter.org

Training 
Some assistive technology (AT) is very simple, and its operation is intuitive. Other kinds of AT are more elaborate, requiring some learning and practice. Sometimes, new devices or software need to be installed, adjusted, or customized for the individual user's requirements. The Kornreich Technology Center (KTC) provides training in the use of AT hardware and software to the consumer and to others who support that consumer. Training may be a brief orientation to a new device, or extended instruction in the use of complex technology, such as voice-recognition software.

For more information about our training programs, contact croth@viscardicenter.org

Consultation 
For solutions to be effective, individual evaluation and training services should not stand alone. Steps need to be taken to prepare the environment where the technology will be used, and the people within that environment. Kornreich Technology Center consults with agencies, school districts and employers with regard to integrating their users’ assistive technology into the classroom, workplace, or other environments. This includes exploring workplace design and universal design approaches that allow everyone to perform at their best.

To learn more about about how we can integrate assistive technology into your setting, contact croth@viscardicenter.org

Educational Services 
The Kornreich Technology Center is dedicated to promoting increased awareness of the benefits of assistive technology, ergonomics and related solutions for people with disabilities, as well as the aging workforce. The KTC team is available to make presentations at conferences and meetings, teach continuing education programs and academic courses, and partake in other educational  or business venues delivered through webinars, teleconferences, etc.

Education is provided for a variety of audiences, including:

Healthcare and education professionals
Consumers and families
Disability advocates
Safety and ergonomics teams
Human resource and risk management professionals
Agencies dealing with the aging population
Veterans’ organizations
 
This education is provided through:
 
Professional Development Workshops – These workshops may be held at the Kornreich Technology Center at
  The Viscardi Center in Albertson or at off-site locations on beginning, intermediate and advanced topics related
  to assistive technology and other solutions.
 
E-Learning – Technology allows the Center to collaborate and educate locally, nationally and internationally
  through the use of its distance learning capabilities that include web-based projects.
 
Academic Education – The Center participates in the pre-service training of professionals via student visits,
  assisting students in research project through its library and teaching courses at academic institutions in its
  region. In 2012, the Kornreich Technology Center staff taught the Assistive Technology course at Stony Brook
  University School of Health Technology and Management, Occupational Therapy program.
 
Information Services and Referrals - The Kornreich Technology Center is a comprehensive resource on
  assistive technology, ergonomics and related solutions for people with disabilities and the aging workforce.

To learn more about our educational services, contact croth@viscardicenter.org

Equipment Leasing 
Sometimes, assistive technology devices can be more than the school district or user can afford to pay.  The Kornreich Technology Center is dedicated to providing children and adults with the equipment they need to enhance their quality of life. An Equipment Leasing Program allows organizations and users to lease directly from KTC through a contractual arrangement. 

To learn more about our equipment leasing options, contact croth@viscardicenter.org.

Return to Work Initiatives  
Return to Work initiatives are designed to facilitate the earliest possible return for injured or ill workers to the workforce and to reduce the risk of the job injury or accident from occurring again. The staff at the Kornreich Technology Center at The Viscardi Center, can assist employers by:

Working with the medical staff of the organization to understand the needs of the returning worker.
 
Conducting work task and work environment assessments, including tools and accessories, and providing
  in-depth recommendations on how to improve ergonomics and on-the-job safety in an effort to reduce the
  risk of a work-related injury or accident from occurring or recurring.

To learn more about our Return to Work initiatives, contact croth@viscardicenter.org