I was going through my emails yesterday, and noticed a promotion from a company that specializes in adaptive equipment for Logan. They had several “must have” adaptive strollers for outdoor use, and I always quickly look at these for several reasons. The main reason is that Logan is almost too big for our trusty Jeep jogging stroller that we got when Jack was a baby. This thing is a beast and we love it, but time to move on soon.
So, I scrolled down to see if there was anything I hadn’t seen before. There wasn’t. BUT…there was one for the beach…that could go in the water! Yes!!!! It looked pretty simple and had no frills. I clicked on it to see the price and got SO angry. I was thinking a couple hundred. Nope. It was $1431.95. And that’s on sale from $1800! For a stroller that we would likely use a few times a year. (This company does have some reasonably priced items, and items where the price makes sense.)
I started thinking about how ridiculously expensive gear is for anyone with needs. I am so mad about it, and feel like the special needs community is being taken advantage of. I understand the high prices of equipment that is made for complex medical needs, but something like a stroller…or bed is mind boggling.
Our families face many financial burdens. There are countless therapies, doctor appointments, medications, feeding supplies, diapers, special gear, etc. Many parents can’t work full time jobs because of their child’s needs and demanding schedules. Many don’t have decent insurance that will cover all of these costs (and if they do, they have to spend countless hours fighting for coverage). Many do not qualify for any kind of financial assistance. I feel like these companies know that the parents or caregivers will do anything possible to make life easier for everyone all around, so they have these crazy prices.
When we were looking for a bed for Logan I thought it would be fairly easy to find what we needed. Boy was I wrong. The bed that was suitable for Logan cost a whopping $7900!!! For a bed! Insurance wouldn’t cover it since it was not a medical necessity. Crazy, huh. Luckily we found the resources to have an identical (well, prettier if you ask me!) one made for wayyyy cheaper. You can read about it here.
Logan needs an adaptive stroller since she is not walking independently yet. This was a must, and we found the perfect fit for her with the Leggero Reach. This was a couple grand (some say adaptive strollers are glorified strollers), but thankfully our insurance covered all of it. For all you special needs parents reading this, check this brand out! It comes with all the accessories and folds up nicely. Logan’s posture in this is incredible (she doesn’t sink back and get too comfy like in some others we tried). Plus, one of Logan’s Pitt friends is a model for the stroller 🙂
Communication is also a must for us. Since Logan can’t point yet we had to settle on a Tobii, a device that tracks her eyes. It’s incredible and worth every penny. And it’s a pretty penny. Somewhere around $15,000. Insurance came through on this one as well. Thank goodness. Still though, that price is crazy for a device that is pretty bulky.
Oh yes, and there are special high chairs, swings, bikes, etc. These are all 10x more than similar products for typical kids. Why?! Well, I know why for some, but not most I come across.
So, those are just our expenses for gear. We are lucky. Many other kiddos need much more, and that comes at a hefty price. For some it is easy and manageable, but not for most. How are these kids supposed to reach their full potential without these things?! How can these companies charge such crazy amounts?! Like I said, I understand the high prices for some items, but not for most.
So, thankfully David is super talented and can make this beach stroller for less than a couple hundred, and it will most likely be better that then one I came across. Maybe we should start a company that specializes in realistic prices for gear and furniture, that every family can afford one way or another!? Hmmm…