DLF Data Web App
Date: February 2013
DLF-data, the DLF’s (Disabled Living Foundation) professional database of daily living equipment / assistive technology is now available as a web app for use on Smart Phones. This means therapists with a login could find product details, suppliers’ contact details, retailers and organisations via their phones when out on home visits or working across sites. They can give relevant details to service users then and there, and not have to wait till they are back in the office. Therapists attending last month’s Moving and Handling Conference 2013 described the DLF-data web app as “very helpful”, as containing a “Wealth of Information” and a “Great design”.
DLF-data is a database of over 10,000 daily living equipment / assistive technology items from 1000 suppliers maintained by the DLF. Users of DLF-data can create reports of products, suppliers, local retailers and organisations and look up references relevant to different categories of assistive technology. For example, a therapist may create a report for a service user listing a range of long handled washing equipment, stocking aids and helping hands (easy reachers), a selection of national suppliers and local retailers together with relevant organisations who can provide further advice and support. They can then print this report or email it to the service user or their carer.
Many occupational therapists remember DLF-data when it consisted of a set of ring binders which contained details of daily living equipment split into categories such as beds and bed accessories, bathing equipment and manual wheelchairs. The database was converted into a CD Rom in 1999 and went online in 2003.
Twenty percent of visitors to DLF-data are now using mobile devices, the web app version shows how DLF is keeping up with developments in technology and its users’ preferences. DLF developed the site as a web app rather than native app as with hundreds of product records (such as prices and availability) being changed every week a native app would be out of date within days. The site uses the same address as the desktop site, www.dlf-data.org.uk the site will automatically detect whether the user is using a desktop PC or mobile device. The web app has been tested on iPhones and a range of Android phones. If you find the app does not work on your phone please let DLF know so it can be considered for future development.
OT students have access to a free subscription and should ask their library services or DLF for details.