Home modifications that increase safety and support daily activities can help older adults stay independent in their homes. Yet assessing a person’s needs—and providing home modifications that properly address them—can require a range of providers from rehabilitation specialists to contractors.

All too often, especially in emergency situations, older adults’ home modification needs are not fully met.

To increase the likelihood that consumers receive the right services at the right time from the right professionals, the National Home Safety and Home Modification Work Group, led by the National Council on Aging and the University of Southern California Leonard Davis School of Gerontology, developed The Home Modification Service-Delivery Model: A Transdisciplinary Team Approach.

The goal of this model is to expand access to optimal home modification interventions for older adults and people with disabilities. Designed for a broad professional audience, it aims to improve knowledge of the complexity of the problem and the needs, and awareness of the types of providers that can and should be involved in the home modification process. The model:

  • Outlines the types of professional groups typically involved in home modification service delivery. These include:
    • Occupational therapists
    • Physical therapists
    • Nonprofits
    • Architects
    • Contractors
    • Care managers
    • Primary care providers
    • Handypersons
  • Delineates the ideal approach to the Home Modification Service Delivery Process based on evidence and expert perspectives. While this process will differ depending on individual need, preferences, funding available, and access to team members, comprehensive team approaches are the goal.
  • Describes the typical role of each professional group in the different phases of the home modification process.
  • Provides links for more information on home modification resources, trainings, funding sources, programs, and providers.

Whether you are a health care provider or community-based organization, you have the potential to impact this process for consumers by leveraging this model. Download The Home Modification Service Delivery Model: A Transdisciplinary Team Approach:

These materials were developed by the National Home Safety and Home Modification Work Group, a collaboration of the National Falls Prevention Resource Center at the National Council on Aging and the Fall Prevention Center of Excellence at the University of Southern California Leonard Davis School of Gerontology.

The National Home Safety and Home Modification Work Group is an interprofessional body that engages key stakeholders to advance home safety, home modification, and universal design policy, education, service delivery, and research. Visit them and the Home Modification Information Network to find home modification funding sources. 

This project was supported, in part by grant number 90FP0023 from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.