Universal Design/Lifetime Homes
The concept of Lifetime Homes was developed in the early 1990s by a group of housing experts, including Habinteg Housing Association and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. The group was formed because of concerns about how inaccessible and inconvenient many homes were for large sections of the population. The principles of Lifetime Homes have supported the growing demand for choice, flexibility and independence among disabled people of all ages, as well as promoting high quality and thoughtful housing design for the general population.
Lifetime Homes are ordinary homes incorporating 16 Design Criteria that can be universally applied to new homes at minimal cost. Each design feature adds to the comfort and convenience of the home and supports the changing needs of individuals and families at different stages of life.
Lifetime Homes are all about flexibility and adaptability; they are not ‘special’, but are thoughtfully designed to create and encourage better living environments for everyone. From raising small children to coping with illness or dealing with reduced mobility in later life, Lifetime Homes make the ups and downs of daily living easier to manage." (Source: Lifetimehomes.org.uk)
Watch a video about an AARP award-winning design home.
Resources from State Independent Living Council: (downloads below)
Read a real-life story about lifetime homes from the Washington Post - click here.
Illinois Healthcare Exchange
The new Illinois health benefits market place is open, just as in the rest of the country, for people who have been previously uninsured. The website for the Illinois marketplace (also known as the “exchange”) is http://getcoveredillinois.gov. If you do not have health insurance in Illinois, please check out this website. Contact us at IVCIL if you have questions or concerns, as we would like to know how the new insurance market place is working for people with disabilities.
October 1, 2013 marks the first day of the Open Enrollment Period for the new health insurance marketplaces available as a result of the Affordable Care Act. Therefore, it also marks the beginning of the “Get Covered” campaign in Illinois to educate consumers about obtaining insurance coverage.
Anyone with Medicare will not be allowed to shop in the new Marketplace. They should continue to use and access their Medicare coverage the same way they always have. The Medicare Open Enrollment Period remains October 15-December 7, and individuals/counselors should use medicare.gov to compare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans, just as we always have. Additionally, anyone who already has Medicaid or another form of insurance coverage can (and in most cases should) keep what they already have – they do not need to go to the Marketplace.
Anyone who is currently uninsured and will be looking to make use of the new Adult Medicaid program or the new health insurance Marketplace in Illinois, they can visit the Get Covered Illinois website for more information:
Illinois also has a hotline where consumers can get telephone assistance with questions about or applications for Medicaid or new Marketplace coverage: (866)311-1119.
On the Get Covered Illinois website, you can find information for individuals and families who need insurance coverage, as well as information for small businesses looking to provide coverage to their employees. By clicking “See your options,” individuals can respond to screening questions that will help direct the person to the ABE system (to apply for Medicaid) or to the Illinois Marketplace.
We recommend that individuals looking for coverage, work with a certified Illinois Navigator agency who have been trained to provide one-on-one assistance. To find a certified Navigator, individuals can click on “Get Help in Your Area” and type in their zip code. (Please note: This feature is currently only a zip code search, so if no Navigators pop up in one zip code, try searching other zip codes nearby!) Individuals can also locate a Navigator by contacting the Illinois hotline number – (866)311-1119.
Languages: There is a link to click to the Spanish version at the top of the home page. You can also look for the Polish version at http://getcoveredillinois.gov/fact-sheets/. We are awaiting comparable info in ASL.