Category Archives: Uncategorized

Jay Leno Gives Navy Vet a Van

We were honored today to be part of giving a deserving vet ─ U.S. Navy veteran David Miller, living with cerebellar atrophy and ataxia ─ his own accessible vehicle. And it happens to be a BraunAbility converted van that once belonged to former president George Bush, Sr. Jay Leno and Jenna Bush Hager presented the van to David on “The Today Show.” Watch the video above. And here are some photos taken on set as the show was being videotaped ─  it was an exciting day for all of us!
Jay Leno is a good guy! Jay Leno and Dan Walsh Jay Leno, veteran David Miller and family, and the Bussani Team

Minivan or Full-Size Wheelchair Van: Which is Best?

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Van
Making the decision between purchasing a minivan or a full-sized van to meet your need for wheelchair accessible transportation comes down to a matter of personal choice. Each type of vehicle comes with its own benefits, but the decision ultimately should be based on your specific needs and wants. We’ve compiled a list of what each has to offer, to help make your decision easier.
Minivans
Minivans are the most popular accessible vehicle option. They have an impeccable safety record that is hard to beat. Additionally, they have achieved a perfect NHTSA crash test record. Aside from the safety features they offer, minivans are also cost-efficient and get good gas mileage, which further increases your potential savings.
Although minivans are safe and more affordable, they do have one drawback. They have a smaller interior than a full-sized van, and so there is less space to move around inside and to store items. But remember that even minivan conversions these days have enough space for power wheelchairs.
Full-Sized Vans
Full-sized vans offer the space necessary to transport passengers with any type of wheelchair and still have plenty of extra space for ambulatory passengers. There is also ample room for wheelchair storage, accessories, luggage, and more.
Another big advantage of a full-sized van is that they can hold double post lifts, which are capable of lifting the largest, heaviest wheelchairs on the market.
Also, full-sized vans have an extra six inches of headroom inside, allowing for optimal comfort.
Some people can feel intimidated by driving a full-sized van because it is significantly larger than a minivan, and they may have a harder time maneuvering into small spaces. But, with a little practice, you get used to handling the vehicle.
Either type of wheelchair van is going to provide you with the freedom to be independent. At Bussani Mobility, we have a wide selection of both minivans and full-sized vans, and even SUVs, so that you can find the right one for your needs. We hope you’ll stop by any of our three locations to talk with one of our mobility specialists or check out our vehicles online.

Why It’s Better to Buy a Wheelchair Accessible Van from a Local Mobility Dealer Than Online

wheelchair van

Anyone searching for a mobility vehicle knows that there are many options to consider. Some might even be lured into purchasing a wheelchair van online because of the convenience of being able to shop from home.
While you might be tempted to buy a vehicle online, many have learned the hard way that this might not be such a good idea. It is far better and safer to go to a local mobility dealer, like Bussani Mobility, to learn about and purchase a wheelchair accessible van or an accessible SUV. Some of these advantages are:
 

  • Fully customized vehicle that is guaranteed to meet your needs
  • Certified service department to help you with maintenance and repairs
  • Financing options and assistance from a dedicated mobility specialist


Customized Vehicle  

When you visit your local mobility dealer, you are sure to get a vehicle that will work for your specific needs. A mobility specialist will do a thorough evaluation, including:
 

  • Physical challenges
  • Size and features of your wheelchair
  • Any additional equipment that you transport regularly
  • Parking and garage set-up
  • Who is driving


Your vehicle is then guaranteed to fit you, your wheelchair and your equipment comfortably. No crossing your fingers that the vehicle you ordered online will be a good match. You’ll know for a fact that you are getting the right vehicle.

Specialized Service Department
When your accessible vehicle needs servicing, you want a mechanic who specializes in working on mobility equipment. A local mobility dealer has a service department that will handle maintenance and repair your wheelchair van the right way.
Financing Options and Assistance
Purchasing a mobility vehicle is an investment that can be a challenge for some to afford. When you buy your vehicle from a local dealer, such as Bussani Mobility, they can discuss with you different financing options that are available and guide you on which is best for you, to help make your dream of owning your own mobility vehicle come true.

Wheelchair Van Financing Options

wheelchair van financing
Purchasing a wheelchair van is an expensive investment that can sometimes be a challenge to afford. Thankfully, there are programs available that can help caregivers and individuals be able to afford and find the right wheelchair van financing that they need. Below are some options that can help make owning a wheelchair accessible van or SUV a reality.
– Special Financing Options: These programs include loans with extended terms, leasing packages, and more. At Bussani Mobility, we have long-standing relationships with banks and other financial institutions that understand the specialized components involved in buying an accessible vehicle.
– Veterans Administration: For qualified veterans, the Veteran’s Administration allocates funds for adaptive equipment.
– State Agencies: Every state has a Vocational Rehabilitation Program. These programs are designed to assist individuals with disabilities to remain or get back into the workforce, and they are state-funded. In some cases, they can help provide funding to make vehicle modifications.
– Mobility Rebate Programs: Mobility manufactures (including BraunAbility) and vehicle manufacturers (such as Chrysler, Ford, GM and Toyota) often offer rebate incentives for the purchase of a new vehicle that requires accessibility modification. Before purchasing a vehicle, be sure to talk to your dealer about rebate options available.
– Grants: There are several organizations that can provide information, support, and resources to individuals with specific disabilities. Reach out to your local chapter to see what information, resources, assistance, or guidance they have to offer.
– Fundraising: Social media has changed everything about how we communicate today. You’ll see people raising funds for their personal needs on sites like GoFundMe – including wheelchair accessible vehicles. The campaigns involve family, friends, neighbors, and the whole community. If you’re comfortable with it, you might even want to reach out to the local news and explain what you’re trying to do and ask if they would be interested in covering your story, helping to get your cause out there.
There are many options available for wheelchair van financing. Some require creative effort on your part. Be sure to talk to your mobility specialist at Bussani Mobility to discuss all of your options, so we can help you find the right wheelchair accessible van or SUV to fit your needs.

Three Important Questions to Ask Your Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle Dealer Before You Buy

wheelchair accessible vehicle
Purchasing a wheelchair accessible vehicle can be a complicated process. While researching and choosing an accessible vehicle might seem to be overwhelming to those who are just starting out, there are a few things to keep in mind that can help to simplify the process.
To start, there are three important questions to discuss with your dealer:
1. Do I need to meet with a Certified Driver Rehabilitation Specialist before purchasing a vehicle?
Individuals with disabilities who wish to drive their mobility vehicle, will need to begin their car buying journey by completing a professional evaluation conducted by a Certified Driver Rehabilitation Specialist. They recommend the appropriate adaptive driving solutions and work with your vehicle dealer to customize your adaptive vehicle conversion.
2. Are my safety needs and comfort being met?
The ultimate goal of an accessible vehicle is your overall safety on the road. Your certified mobility dealer will be able to explain how each piece of specialized equipment or vehicle modification can positively impact your everyday life, all while ensuring your safety, comfort and ultimately your independence.  
3. What are my financing options?
Your wheelchair van or wheelchair SUV will be a worthwhile investment into your independence, but cost still plays a big role in the decision. There are financing options available that can help to make the purchase easier to bear for those who qualify, such as funding from the VA, Medicaid Waivers, ACCES-VR and more.
At Bussani Mobility, we are committed to helping you find the right mobility vehicle for you, and to get you mobile! Check out our wide selection of new, used, and pre-owned vehicles today to find the right one for you.

How to Find a Wheelchair Van in New York

Our customized wheelchair vans
If you’re living with a physical disability, we understand that you may have added challenges to contend with in your everyday life. We also know that with the right mobility equipment, you can move about with a real sense of independence and freedom.
You can manage life’s daily tasks, visit with family and friends, and live out your dreams. We’re here to help you get mobile and enjoy your independence … as we like to say, one mile at a time.
Our customized wheelchair vans allow you to travel freely from your wheelchair or scooter. The accessible vehicles can be driven by an individual using a wheelchair or by a caregiver.
They have automatic doors and ramps, allowing you easy access to your vehicle without needing to transfer or inconvenience yourself outside of your vehicle. It’s easy to push a button on your remote key fob to open the door and ramp, and wheel into your position. The tie-down secures you safely inside. Specialized driving equipment like hand controls, foot controls and high-tech driving aids are also available.
With a wheelchair van, you can easily enter and exit your vehicle in minutes, safely. For anyone living in the busy environment of New York City and its suburbs, you know the faster you can get in and out of your vehicle, the better.
If you’re thinking about purchasing a new or used conversion vehicle for the first time, or upgrading your current vehicle, it’s always a good idea to do some research online first. But then, be sure to go to a local mobility dealer to see the vehicles in person. We don’t recommend buying a wheelchair accessible vehicle entirely online, sight unseen.
When you’re ready to take the next step, call us or stop by one of our three locations in New York. Our mobility specialists will be happy to help you find the right vehicle for you at the right price for your budget.

A Modern Love Story Revisited – Congratulations!

Back in January we wrote about
how Frank Sciarretta and Emily Costanza, good friends and customers of Bussani Mobility, met through Canine Companions for Independence
and their relationship turned to romance.  With a date for their wedding set they and their families including their service dogs, Bastien and Carmel, were eagerly awaiting the day they would become one happy family.

Well that day has arrived in late October and they have shared the photos with us which we now share with all of you.  The Bride was beautiful, the groom was elegant and their furry wedding party looked resplendent in their best collars and leads.  Also, their amazing journey of love was reported by Fios1 News which you can watch here.

Congratulations to the NEW Mr. & Mrs. Sciarretta and we wish all four of you nothing but happiness and love for the rest of your lives!

Bussani Mobility

The happy Couple Plus two!

Bussani Mobility

The bride arrives.

Bussani Mobility

The beautiful bride prepares for her trip down the aisle

Bussani Mobility

Finally Husband & Wife

.

 
 
 

Save the date – October Mobility Club Meeting Oct 16th

New York Mobility Club

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About our October Mobility Club Speaker…

Moriches resident, Angela Pittala has been a strong advocate in the disabled community for over a decade. In 1998, she became a member of On the Move, a non-profit organization assisting disabled people in Suffolk County. While a member of the organization, she worked with both local and state governments to change local laws that infringed on disability rights. In 2001, Angela went on to earn a Master’s degree in Social Work from SUNY Stony Brook and volunteered at the Suffolk County Legislature. In 2008-2011 she resided in a small town outside of Syracuse, New York and served as an advocate at Arise Inc. where she helped to change housing, transportation and nursing home initiatives.

Today, Angela remains a strong advocate while working as a home-based travel agent for Travel Ports & Voyages. She serves everyone in her community, but specializes in travel for people with physical disabilities. She enjoys helping people create their dream vacation and putting a smile on their face. Angela says,” It’s like doing Social Work, but more fun”. Angela specializes in cruises, guided tours and hotel packages. For information email her at angelapittala@yahoo.com

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PRESS RELEASE – Bussani Mobility To Present Wheelchair Accessible Van Donation At 2013 Independence & Mobility Fair

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Click Here to see a video presentation about the 2012 Van Donation Program and Recipient

For Immediate Release: September 26, 2013

Free vehicle will be donated to worthy recipient for second year to alleviate hardship.

(Bethpage, NY) – On Saturday, September 28th 2013, as part of the 2013 Independence & Mobility Fair, the Bussani Mobility Team will once again present a free, wheelchair accessible van to a worthy recipient who is experiencing an urgent need for mobility that is all too common for people living with disabilities.  The first donation of this type by Bussani Mobility was made during the 2012 Independence & Mobility Fair in September 2012 and the presentation of this year’s van will continue the Bussani Mobility tradition of working to help the community they serve.

The tradition, which was started at the 2012 Independence and Mobility Fair, had its true start in 2011 when Bussani Mobility was approached by Howard Thompson of New York’s WPIX News segment “Help Me Howard” in regards to helping a New Jersey family whose accessible van was stolen.  The family, whose 4-year-old daughter suffered from the terminal illness spinal muscular atrophy, was unable to purchase a replacement van and Bussani Mobility came to the rescue to provide a replacement van at no cost.

“After our experience helping out with the New Jersey family, we realized that this didn’t have to be a one-time donation.  We wanted to give back to the community that has embraced us and that comes to us for all of their mobility needs,” said Daniel Bussani, Vice President at Bussani Mobility Team.  “So starting last year we solicited recommendations of worthy families in the area and we were able to help out another family who was struggling to lead a normal life while dealing with the burden of a disability.”

2012’s recipient of the Van Donation program, Claudia Zavatsky of Melville, NY, was overjoyed at receiving the donation as she was struggling to transport her son Alex who was suffering with Cerebral Palsy as he grew older.  “Prior to receiving the van, I struggled to transport Alex to and from school and other destinations as I was using my car which required me to lift him from his wheelchair into the car and load the wheelchair in the trunk.  When Bussani Mobility presented me with the van it was the miracle I was hoping for.  In the days that followed the presentation I was hit with new challenges including the sudden death of my brother and the devastation that so many in our area had to deal with because of Superstorm Sandy.  Having the van during those exceptionally trying times was truly a blessing and I will always love the Bussani Mobility Team for their generosity.

Dan Bussani added that the 2013 Van Donation presentation will take place on the second day of the annual Bussani Independence & Mobility Fair at their Bethpage headquarters.  “I invite everyone in the area who is living with a disability or who has a family member or friend who is living with a disability to attend this free community event, especially on Saturday September 28th when we will present this year’s van donation at 2PM.”

Bussani Mobility Team (www.bussanimobility.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, and with additional offices in Smithtown and Mamaroneck, 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, 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.

Press contact:

Robert Carbone

631-204-4128 x304

rcarbone@wegetyouthere.com

2013 Independence & Mobility Fair Spotlight – 2 Workshops that define Independence

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Each year at our Independence & Mobility Fair we offer a slate of free workshops to educate attendees on developments in technology and new services that will help them to become truly independent.  Independence means freedom and two types of freedom are financial freedom and the freedom to travel and get around.  These two areas are the focus of two of our free workshops.

The first workshop, being held on Friday September 27th from 3-3:45PM is the “Adaptive Driving – Comprehensive Automotive Mobility Solutions” is being presented by our friends at Abilities, Inc.  this workshop will provide an overview of the innovative adaptive driving equipment available to assist people with disabilities. It will cover the clinical evaluation process designed to assess the potential of people with disabilities to drive and adaptive teaching methodologies available to operate specially modified vehicles and the Adaptive Driver Education Program. 

Presenting the workshop will be a Certified Driver Rehabilitation Specialist Ed Colverd of Abilities, Inc. who said, “The Adapted Driver Education Program at Abilities, Inc. helps people with disabilities and aging issues realize their goals by helping them to function more easily and with a greater amount of independence.”  Colverd added that he hopes that the workshop and the information he presents will encourage more people to take the program at The Viscardi Center and take the step toward greater independence.

The second workshop, being held on Saturday September 28th from 12-12:45PM is “Financial Planning – Protecting Assets while Maximizing Benefits”.  This class will cover legal and financial matters affecting people with disabilities and their families.  “Understanding and navigating “the system” can be challenging when dealing with government benefits, including SSI/SSDI, Medicare and Medicaid,” said workshop presenter Andrew M. Cohen, Esq.  You will learn about steps you can take to protect your assets including, creating Life Care Plans, Letters of Intent and Guardianship and the use of Supplemental Needs Trusts.  People who attended the August Mobility Club meeting covering Working with Disabilities (you can watch the videos of that event here) were introduced to many of these topics and this workshop will serve as an excellent introduction to the topic and a valuable follow up to the August Mobility Club presentation.

Attendees should be sure to pick up a schedule when they arrive so they can be sure to attend these and the other exciting workshops that will be occurring during the 2013 Independence & Mobility Fair.