Category Archives: physically challenged

Veteran Christopher Levy Wins a New Jeep

Veteran Christopher Levy Wins a New Jeep

Congrats to the recipient of the 4th Annual Great American Jeep Giveaway at Westbury Jeep! Christopher Levy, U.S. Army, who served 8 years including tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, was honored earlier this year. Bussani Mobility worked with Westbury Jeep to install hand controls that operate the gas and the brake – and to give an American hero a chance to get back on the road. We salute our heroes.


First-Ever Wheelchair Accessible SUV

Have you heard that the first wheelchair accessible SUV is coming soon!?!
MXV with ramp #2 HIGH RES
Built on the 2015 Ford Explorer chassis, the BraunAbility MXV™ wheelchair accessible SUV personifies action and independence while allowing for easy access and safe driving by people who use wheelchairs.   A prototype of the vehicle will be on display at the Special Needs Expo Long Island this Sunday courtesy of local mobility dealer Bussani Mobility Team and manufacturer BraunAbility.  The expo brings the special needs community together for a fun-filled and informative day. Admission is free. It’s taking place 11am-4pm at the Long Island Hilton (598 Broad Hollow Rd, Melville, NY).

“The MXV represents a new era in mobility,” said Daniel Bussani, Vice President at Bussani Mobility Team. “This is nothing short of a breakthrough in mobility transportation options for people living with physical disabilities. It offers great new options for people to express their personality and live an active lifestyle.”

The BraunAbility MXV™ holds four patent-pending features, including a glide-out door operation and a space-saving sliding shifter. BraunAbility’s dependable in-floor technology maximizes interior space and removable driver and passenger seating offers flexibility for power and manual wheelchairs. And this mobility vehicle is equipped with a tow package.
It will be available for purchase later this year through local mobility dealers including Bussani Mobility Team.

Watch this video
to learn more.


Yes We Can!

by guest blogger Liz Treston
Liz Treston & Finney
My name is Liz. Of all the things I did not plan on was becoming an expert in spinal cord injury and diseases. I am an expert through life not books.  My methods of teaching vary dependent upon my audience. If you’re in an elementary class at Career Day, I’m not going to go into details about proper bowel evacuation. I will, however, always be honest.

Honesty can be brutal at times. Depending on how long you’ve been in the exclusive club of SCI/D might also effect whether you read my article further. How did you get here? Did you fall out of a tree, miss a turn, smack a shoreline, a gene screwed with your body’s makeup, or you slid on silk sheets out of bed?

It doesn’t really matter. You are here. In that sense, that’s the first step on any journey. Being here. I can either be your mentor or the crazy lady with the dog. It’s perception. Isn’t that what we deal with every day? Society’s perception of our abilities? Our strengths and weaknesses? It can get exhausting being judged all the time. I should know. It’s one of my faults, judging people. I’m working on it.

After a SCI/D, we all go through our own personal journeys. It’s complicated. That’s a weak word. It’s beyond complicated, but you already know that. Eventually we figure out how to maneuver through the hallway again. We adapt to a life that was not planned.

Frankly, nobody’s life is set out on an agenda. We ride along with varying hills and mountains. Sometimes we come across a crevice and just want to fall in, but we don’t. We adapt.

We return to work, school. We return to our prior roles of mother, wife, husband, student, athlete, friend, employee, employer, artist or lawyer. Eventually we begin to transition to a new normal. One of the things about being human is our desire to be close to another human. It’s something about biology.

There have been a number of studies on sex and disabilities; not surprisingly, most involve men. Not that I have anything against men but, I want my body studied too!

In my workshops and presentations, I try to break stereotypes. Stereotypes you may have had before you found yourself in our little exclusive club. One of the biggest misperceptions is sex.

Yes, I can.
Yes, he can.
Yes, she can too.
Yes we do.

Together, we can help dispel the myths that a piece of fancy titanium attached to us makes us asexual.

Liz Treston a mentor with NYSCIA. She and her Canine Companion for Independence service dog, Finney, are a spokesperson team for Hearthfire (a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the role of the artist as a catalyst for personal and global evolution). She has also been very active with emergency preparedness efforts since Hurricane Sandy hit our area. Nassau County’s Executive Ed Mangano has honored her for her service to the community. Liz is available for panel discussions and conferences on a number of subjects focusing on advocacy, personal growth, and persons with disabilities in emergency and disaster preparation.


Southside Hospital Helps People with Disabilities Get Mobile

CEU Southside 2
Southside Hospital has teamed up with Bussani Mobility to train healthcare professionals in the latest automotive mobility options that help people with disabilities get back on the road – and regain their independence.


CEU Southside 1
More than 20 physical therapists gathered during a lunchtime presentation at Southside Hospital to learn about wheelchair accessible vans (with raised roofs, lowered floors, ramps, and/or wheelchair lifts), adaptive driving equipment (such as hand or foot controls), and other mobility products (including scooter lifts and power seat lifts). These customized vehicles and products make everyday life easier for people who use wheelchairs or scooters, people who just need some help getting in and out of a vehicle, and caregivers of those living with disabilities.


CEU Southside 3
Other topics discussed at the training included: information about industry associations like NMEDA, how to work with driver evaluators, and how to help patients get financial assistance. Attendees received CEUs (Continuing Education Units) for participating in the complimentary training.

“We are always striving to partner with our vendors to provide the latest technology to our patients in order to assist them in being as independent as possible,” said Valerie Kruszon, PT, MS, Administrative Director Rehabilitation Services at Southside Hospital. “The Southside rehabilitation department thanks Bussani Mobility for assisting us in achieving that goal.”


CEU Southside 4
Daniel Bussani, Vice President at Bussani Mobility, added: “We were so pleased with the turnout at Southside Hospital and the reaction from the staff. Through these trainings, we’re providing medical doctors and physical therapists with the most up-to-date information about automotive mobility products so they can best help their patients who become disabled from an injury or illness. Our shared goal is to safely get people mobile as soon as possible, and help them regain their freedom and independence.”

 Bussani Mobility Team
( www.bussanimobility.com and www.bussanicommercial.com ) is a leading provider of automotive mobility products and services for people with disabilities. The company helps people with disabilities regain the freedom and independence to go where they want to go and do what they want to do. Established in 1974 with headquarters in Bethpage, NY (Nassau County) and with offices in Smithtown (Suffolk County), Mamaroneck (Westchester County) and Sunnyside (Queens), Bussani Mobility Team is a market leader in the Tri-State (NY, NJ, CT) area. The company’s team of experts offers: a complete line of wheelchair vans and mobility equipment from top manufacturers available for purchase or rental, wheelchair accessible taxis, a full-service automotive shop, 24-hour emergency service, special financing options, insurance services, educational opportunities, and in-store consultants who are dedicated to meeting their customers’ every need with a highly personal touch.

Southside Hospital
a member of North Shore-LIJ Health System – and only the second tertiary hospital within Suffolk County – offers centers of excellence in cardiology, orthopedics and neurosciences as well as women’s health services.

Southside offers North Shore-LIJ’s cardiac surgery program with a state of the art hybrid operating room. The Cushing Neuroscience Institute at Southside includes a comprehensive Spine Center, an Epilepsy Center and a state-designated, Gold Plus Award Stroke Center. The North Shore-LIJ Orthopaedic Institute at Southside Hospital specializes in multidisciplinary orthopedic care for the entire spectrum of musculoskeletal disorders.

Southside Hospital is the only Long Island hospital that has received accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) for four rehabilitation programs including inpatient, stroke, brain injury and outpatient rehabilitation. Among these programs is the highly respected Regional Center for Brain Injury Rehabilitation.


New Handicap Symbol in NY

handicapped icon NEW10-14
More than 45 years after it was first created, the handicap symbol is getting a significant redesign, at least in New York. Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) recently signed into law the measure, making New York the first state in the nation to replace the universal symbol with a modified version, according to the sponsors of the bill.

“New York is again leading the way by being the first state in the Nation to update our outdated ‘handicap’ signs with a more active, engaging symbol. Working together we will continue to be a shining example for disability rights throughout the country,” Sen. David Carlucci (D) said in a statement. He and Assemblywoman Sandy Galef (D) co-sponsored the bill, which has no fiscal impact as it only requires new signs to carry the updated icon and which also drops the word “handicapped” from signs and communications in favor of the word “accessible.”


Taking Flight in Freedom’s Wings Life Challenge

Freedom Wings
Freedom’s Wings (FWI) is a non-profit organization run by and for people with physical disabilities. They provide the opportunity for those who are physically challenged to fly in specially adapted sailplanes, either as a passenger or as a member of the flight training program.

Freedom Wings

 

On September 12, when we arrived at the Blairstown Airport for the Life Challenge event, it was a gorgeous morning. We felt something special was going to happen. And special is just what occurred.

Freedom Wings

 

Twelve amazing participants left their fear behind on the ground as they all took flight in Gliders provided by Freedom Wings International. What an incredible sight to see!

Freedom Wings
We witnessed first-hand and up-close how they approached this challenge with eyes wide open — and they did not waiver at all. It was inspiring to play a small part in helping each and every person into the cockpit for their Glider flight.

Freedom Wings

 

That’s what Life Challenge is all about.  In these high-level adventure trips, participants with SCI, along with family members and friends, face obstacles together. Through problem solving and teamwork comes a realization: “If I can do this, I can do anything.”

Freedom Wings

 

Since its inception in 2003, 36 Life Challenge Trips have taken place involving 246 people with SCI. Life Challenge has received generous support from the Ethan Ruby Foundation, the New York Chapter of the National Spinal Cord Injury Association, and the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, helping to off-set the costs for participants. The program is coordinated by Jim Cesario, MA.

https://www.freedomswings.org/