DeafBlind Services through the Kentucky Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) include providing assistive technology, employment services and specialized training to help people who are DeafBlind improve the quality and ease of their everyday lives.
Living with hearing and vision loss is challenging, but our specialists can help improve your quality of life. Some of the common problems experienced by individuals with hearing and vision loss include the inability to:
- Communicate with others
- Hear various alerts and alarms
- Understand speech over the phone
- Understand instructions at work
Assistance may be available to purchase adaptive technology to help the DeafBlind individual live a more independent lifestyle. The Vocational Rehabilitation and Independent Living Counselors can help individuals identify the type of equipment that best meets the individual's needs. In some cases and individual may be referred to the National DeafBlind Equipment Distribution Program, also known as the I Can Connect Program, for assistance in receiving technology to help the individual communicate with others.
Hearing Aids and Assistive Listening Devices
Assistance may be available to the DeafBlind individual to purchase hearing aids and other assistive listening devices as part of the individual's Vocational Rehabilitation plan or Independent Living plan. Additional assistance with hearing aids and hearing aid repair may be available through our KATS Network.
If vision and hearing loss has prevented the DeafBlind individual from finding or keeping a job, services provided through our Vocational Rehabilitation Services might be of assistance. The services the individual receives are based on the individual's needs and are designed to help reach the individual's job goal.
If the individual has combined vision and hearing loss, the individual's needs are unique. DeafBlind Services can provide specialized training in the following areas:
- Safe Travel
- Adaptive technology
- Low-vision aids
- Amplified and tactile devices
- Communication skills
- Training required to get or keep a job
- Personal Futures Planning (PFP)
- Support Service Provider (SSP)
OVR also works closely with the Helen Keller National Center (HKNC) in order to provide a variety of assessments, training, and other services some of which are available in state from a HKNC DeafBlind Specialist.
DeafBlind Services also works with the following resources and agencies.
Kentucky Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities
Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services (DHHS)
Kentucky Deaf-Blind Project for persons and families from birth to 22 years of age
Helen Keller National Center
iCanConnect National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program
Kentucky Commission on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Presentations from the 2019 DeafBlind Conference