Short-Term Device Loan Program FAQs
- Who may request a device loan?
- For how long can a device be borrowed?
- How many devices can an individual borrow?
- What is the device loan request process?
- How is delivery arranged?
- What comes with a loaned device?
- What does it mean when devices “require support?”
- Under what conditions is durable medical equipment (DME) loaned?
- What are a borrower’s responsibilities and liability?
Requests for device loans should be made by the individual, a family member, advocate, or someone who will serve as a support person to the individual in need of the loaned device during the period of time of the loan. Service providers may also make a request for devices for demonstration and loan purposes. Medical professionals (such as OTs and SLPs), employers and school personnel may also borrow equipment. The individual making the request will be considered the borrower and responsible party for the return of the device. Requests by people with disabilities receive priority over requests from service providers and other professionals.
The standard loan period is for up to 4 weeks.
A borrower may request an extension to his/her loan period. The extension period begins at the time the original loan period ends. Extensions will be granted as long as there is no one on the waiting list for the device.
A borrower requesting an extension to the loan period needs to contact the ATRC no less than one week prior to the scheduled return date. The contact person will determine whether or not the device will be available for the time of the requested extension, and then will contact the borrower of the decision.
Individuals may borrow up to five devices (and its components) at a time.
If a borrower would like to add components to a loan request that has already been processed, a new request form must be completed. Additional components will not be shipped without a new and completed request form.
For a borrower in good standing, there will be no limit to the number of times that a loan may be requested. A borrower in good standing is defined by whether or not he/she has returned all previous items in a timely manner, in good condition, and has fulfilled all of the borrower’s previous responsibilities.
1. Completing a Request Form
Individuals complete a device loan request form online or with help from an AT Regional Center (ATRC). Requests completed online must be printed and mailed. Items will not be loaned unless there is a completed, signed original request on file at the ATRC. Help is available from the ATRCs with completing request forms. An individual may start the process of the request form with the ATRC over the phone or via fax and then mail the hard copy of the request form with the original signature for filing purposes.
All items on the request form must be filled in. There should be no blanks on a request form; a dash (-) or N/A (not applicable) should be written to indicate that the item was not overlooked. Incomplete forms will be returned to the requestor for completion. Requests for items requiring a support person will not be processed unless the support person has been identified.
2. Processing a Request Form
When the request form is received, it will be reviewed by an ATRC staff member to insure the form is complete. If the staff member finds the request form to be incomplete, that staff member will contact the potential borrower to explain why the request cannot be processed.
Once the request form is completed, signed and is received, the staff member at the ATRC will send a Confirmation of Request, along with an actual or projected shipping date to the borrower. The ATRC will keep the original signed copy of any request. In the event that a device is not available or on loan, the ATRC contact person will discuss possible alternatives with the borrower and/or support person.
If an item is not available as it is already on loan, the request will be placed on the device Waiting List.
Requests are processed in the order that they are received. Requests for devices by people with disabilities are given priority status over service providers that are making requests for the purpose of training and demonstration.
Any questions on the status of a request should be directed to the ATRC contact person.
Borrowers are encouraged to arrange for pick-up/return of items to reduce the costs of delivery for the program.
In the event that the device is shipped or delivered, the following applies:
- Items must be delivered and picked up at the same address, unless other arrangements are made prior to initial pick-up or delivery
- If no one is usually home during regular business hours, do not use a home address on the request form. Request that the device be delivered to an alternate address, e.g. family member’s office, and be signed for.
- If the loan package is to be delivered to a large facility such as a hospital or school, the name of the responsible person who is to receive the loan package plus specific department information and room numbers are required for delivery.
The “device loan package” delivered to the borrower includes:
- the device, needed components and instructions
- an inventory sheet listing all of the parts included in the loan package
- a reminder to notify the ARTC contact person that the device has arrived
- information about how to contact the ARTC in case of any problems and/or questions about the device
- a notice with the date of when the device is to be returned
- a customer satisfaction survey
The ARTC contact person will inform the borrower to check the contents of the loan package upon its arrival to confirm the contents, and if there is an issue to notify the ARTC immediately.
Devices are listed on inventory with an “S” for “some support required” when they require some assistance with set-up but do not require extensive training to use. This support may include physical assistance to unpack and setup equipment, some assembly of components, or some demonstration in order to get the borrower started. This does not require someone with extensive experience with the device.
Devices are listed on inventory with a “Y” for “support required” when they are complex devices requiring a support person skilled in the use of the specific device being requested. In such cases, the borrower must identify a support person, and the ARTC contact person will then review the support person’s skills and experience in order to ensure that the proper support will be available to the borrower during the loan period.
The requirement for a support person may be waived if the borrower has previously used the requested device or one similar to it. The ARTC contact person will be the one to make this judgment, and this is not an automatic decision because the borrower has borrowed the device before.
Durable medical equipment (DME) that has been donated to the program can be loaned under the following conditions:
- for use in the interim while awaiting repair of the same or similar device
- if the individual who will use the device already had an evaluation from a professional for the same or similar device; and
- if the individual already has been trained in the use of the device
DME that requires a prescription will require the sign-off by a professional such as an OT, PT or physician as to the suitability of the device to be loaned. The individual borrowing such DME will be required to sign a Release of Liability.
Individuals seeking DME to determine suitability should be referred to a DME provider.
The borrower is responsible for checking the contents of the loan package upon its arrival to verify that all the contents identified on the checklist are included, and if not to notify the ATRC immediately.
If the borrower does not return all of the components of a device and/or notify the lending ATRC of problems with returning it, he/she is financially responsible for the replacement value of the device or any missing components.
In the case of loss of a device, the borrower will be held financially liable. The borrower must contact their lending ATRC immediately.
In the case of theft, the borrower is not held responsible, as long as the borrower immediately reports the incident to the police and provides a copy of the police report to the lending ATRC.
The borrower is not held responsible for equipment breakage or malfunction that may occur during normal use. However, the borrower could be held liable if he/she does not notify the ATRC immediately. The borrower should not attempt to have repairs done without the ATRC’s consent.
It is illegal to copy any software that is the property of the ATRC. The borrower is responsible for the software loaned to him/her as part of the loan package.
Failure to comply with these policies will result in the borrower’ loss of privileges to use the AT device loan program in the future.
The borrower will receive a Customer Satisfaction Survey each time a device is loaned out. The completed survey needs to be returned with the loan package. Surveys are available in alternative formats or can be completed over the phone.