How much does it cost to live with a Spinal Cord Injury? I’m not talking about emotional costs here, but financial costs. Cashola, $$$
Ok, here’s the shocking truth that most people don’t know:
The lifetime cost of a Spinal Cord Injury is estimated at $9.5 million for a quadriplegic currently. Pretty much you need to budget at least $400 000 PER year for a spinal cord injury.
Months are often spent at Royal North Shore Hospital, followed by months at Ryde Royal Rehab. This results in huge costs to family as they are required to pay for accommodation in Sydney whilst they are also away from their regular paid employment. Not to mention the individual who sustained the spinal cord injury is obviously not working whilst they are in hospital and rehab and it is most likely going to be years before they can return to some type of work.
Homes need extensive modifications. Some homes cannot suitably be modified and so families have to move home. Bathrooms need to be made bigger to allow hoists and shower chairs. Doorways need to be widened, ramps need to be installed, benches need to be lowered for access, wardrobes need to be changed. So many small changes have to be made and these all add up.
Cars need to be modified and a wheelchair accessible car hired whilst waiting for this to be set up. Car modificaitions can easily work up to $70 000 plus. That’s on top of buying a new car.
Specialised equipment is needed for home rehab. Then there is the cost of continuing rehab. Rehab needs to continue for years in order for individuals with these injuries to achieve their maximal possible function and to live life to the fullest.
People with a spinal cord injury need carers and assistance with daily care – showering, bowel care, catheter changes (if you don’t know what these things are, lucky you!). This can be for hours of the day. Imagine having to pay someone for 8 plus hours a day, 365 days a year.. yep it all adds up!
And we haven’t even talked about the cost of wheelchairs and adaptive devices!
The financial costs are huge!
So next time you see someone fundraising, please consider donating. It's a long tough road, but sharing the cost can help, even if just in a small way.