Assistive lighting for people with sight loss

Fisk, Malcolm orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-1602-8393 and Raynham, Peter (2013) Assistive lighting for people with sight loss. Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology, 9 (2). pp. 128-135. ISSN 1748-3107

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This paper affirms the importance of lighting as a technology in the context of people with sight loss. Its importance lies in the ability of appropriate lighting interventions to support independent living and to reduce the likelihood of falls and accidents. The concept of “assistive lighting” is introduced with a set of tenets by which the merits of different lighting interventions can be considered. The tenets are derived from research on lighting and sight loss, including a thorough review of the literature; and consultation in the period from 2008 to 2010 with over 80 rehabilitation workers and occupational therapists in the United Kingdom. They affirm the need for lighting to be appropriate, sufficient, even, adjustable, sustainable and energy efficient, simple and adaptable. Examples of different lighting interventions are provided and these are considered in relation to the tenets. One of the key outcomes of the research was publication of a guide to good practice on lighting interventions for people with sight loss.

Implications for Rehabilitation

-Assistive lighting has important implications for rehabilitation in relation to people with sight loss.
-Simple lighting interventions carry the potential for improving the independence and quality of life of people with sight loss and can reduce the risk of accidents.
-The tenets by which options for lighting interventions can be considered can assist rehabilitation officers and occupational therapists in their work.
-Lighting can be considered as a factor of increasing importance within the broader context of universal design.

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