With hard work and ingenuity, three VCU occupational therapy students devised a swiveling computer table that will help Derrick Bayard increase his independence.
Before dawn on Aug. 8, Derrick Bayard began having severe pain in his abdomen, followed by body spasms. Soon after, it became hard to breathe. He was home alone, a detail made exponentially more important — and dangerous — by the fact that he’s a quadriplegic, unable to use his hands and feet.
An estimated 1,000,000 people in Canada and the United States have limited or no use of their arms—meaning they are unable to use touchscreen devices that could provide access to helpful apps and services.
Inventions, hacks, fixes, tutorials, tips… Invent/ability is a collection of useful solutions to everyday problems like: how to drink coffee without using your hands, how to hack a wheelchair, and how to smartify your home.
Stuart is quadriplegic; he can’t use his arms and legs at all; he can move his head and has about 5mm of reliable control in his right middle finger, and he has severe, complex, and degenerating health issues. This is far from the most interesting thing about him, but it’s important to grasp the extent to which he must “act at a distance” by designing systems and processes to carry out the business of daily living without physical contact. Imagine a house with no light switches, no door handles, no buttons on the phone or taps on the sink or knobs on the boiler.