Home and community habilitation services are offered to assist people living with disabilities in acquiring, retaining, and improving self-help socialization and adaptive skills. These include competencies such as solving routine problems or communicating effectively with social groups.

While an occupational therapist is qualified to provide these services, not all situations require this level of specialization and certification. The level of help needed depends on medical diagnoses and approved treatment plans. Liberty Resources Home Choices provides habilitative support through skills training classes and other methods in the Philadelphia metro area and eastern Pennsylvania. Here, we explain the differences between occupational therapy and habilitation programs.

What Is Occupational Therapy?

Occupational therapy is a medical discipline that assists people with disabilities and seniors in recovering the physical and mental facilities required to perform tasks. Whether these responsibilities are job-related or daily living activities will depend on the needs of the individual.

The occupational therapist evaluates the individual, the activity, and the environment. After designing a plan, the therapist and therapy assistants supervise exercises and other interventions to enable the person to perform the task or series of tasks. Occupational therapists may work with the following:

  • Children with disabilities that affect school performance or social interactions
  • Workers who have been injured
  • Seniors who experienced changes to their thinking abilities or physical mobility

After working with the individual, the occupational therapist will evaluate their progress and determine their outcome. They may recommend further therapy, assistive devices, or social and environmental adjustments.

Understanding Home and Community Habilitation

While there are similarities to occupational therapy, home and community habilitation might be best understood as a long-term process or even lifestyle support. People living with disabilities and seniors can make choices about their independent living situations, but they may also need assistance to complete tasks or keep to a daily schedule. They may require assistance with the following:

  • Meal preparation: Eating healthy meals and snacks at regular intervals
  • Exercise and activity assistance: Keeping physically fit and performing specific tasks
  • Light housekeeping: Maintaining hygiene in their living areas
  • Laundry services and bedding changes: Managing regular upkeep for comfort and cleanliness
  • Grocery shopping and other errands: Making lists, adhering to nutritional plans, and acquiring other household goods or medications
  • Transportation: Walking and using public transportation efficiently and responsibly
  • Employment: Gaining support during work activities

Additional Skillsets for People With Disabilities

Liberty Resources Home Choices also offers classes to further prepare the people we serve for living confident, independent lives. Our mission and vision direct us to help those who cannot help themselves, while always respecting their dignity and their right to be in control of decision-making. That’s why we offer the following training programs:

  • Financial literacy and money management
  • Nutrition and cooking
  • Consumer rights and responsibilities
  • Self-advocacy and managing caregivers
  • How to use public transportation
  • American Sign Language

Advocating for the Civil Rights of People with Disabilities

Considered an essential health benefit in the Affordable Care Act, home and community habilitative services and devices are now available for more people in the United States. We believe that equal opportunities in employment, recreation, and community participation are essential to seniors and people living with disabilities. That’s why we help with finding a caregiver. We also advise how to work with a provider to pay for services and emphasize the importance of understanding individual rights within the caregiver relationship.

Are Home and Community Habilitation Services Right for You?

People living with disabilities and seniors often need help to live independently in their homes. With home and community habilitation services at Liberty Resources Home Choices, our caregivers facilitate this process. With a long-term view for supported, independent living, continuously building skillsets and other accomplishments are possible. For more information about our programs and caregivers in the Philadelphia metro and Lehigh Valley areas, contact us today.

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