Why Zusia™, a new company?
Zusia™ is a company with a new mission and leadership that is uniquely experienced. Here are some of the qualities that distinguishes
Research is a process of investigation that can yield objective information rather than subjective opinion. Zusia™ won't offer you access to a resource, including personal service, until we successfully complete an independent investigation of that resource. We believe that factual information is the most helpful and ethical basis for decisions about resources.
Zusia was a real person who represents the belief upon which this company is founded: the importance of our lives is reflected in the individual qualities of our character and not other accomplishments. The importance of our lives is based on "who" we are, not what we do. You can learn more about Zusia here, and the significance of his name for our company's mission.
Zusia™ is the first American company to offer comprehensive resources for people who live with medical illness and disability.Our resources include referral to personal services that make daily life easier and more enjoyable.Zusia's™ practical resources are also helpful to family, employed caregivers, and to those who provide professional services.
You'll also have access to Zusia's™ BlogSearch, a new source of information that integrates personal experience with disability and research data about disability issues. Each BlogSearch article concerns a subject of importance to the disability community, written in language that can be easily read and understood.
Zusia's™ Community Forum offers an opportunity for meaningful interaction to people with disabilities and to those who have an interest in the complex realities of disability. Interactions range from brief, informative communication to personal, evolving relationships.
Zusia™ was created from the professional and personal experience of our CEO, Dr. Jackie Volk. Dr. Jackie is a clinical psychologist who served as a municipal human rights commissioner during the two decades that her children grew from infancy to adulthood. Dr. Jackie is also cancer survivor with health-related disability.
As a result of her complex experiences, Dr. Jackie understands the significance of resources---personally, professionally, and as a matter of public policy. Zusia™ evolved from this understanding.
Dr. Jackie believes that people with disability deserve access to resources that preserve the quality of their lives and the scope of their function. Despite clear evidence of need , there are comparatively few resources available to people with disabilities. When resources can be identified, it's hard to assess and compare quality because comprehensive resources aren't organized in a central location.
Zusia™ offers easy access to high-quality resources that are located together. All of our resources are either affordable or free. Nothing costs more than a daily cup of coffee.
We work hard to optimize the quality of our resources. Zusia™ designed a process of structured assessment for Service Providers that is based upon research concepts. and culminates in certification.Following certification, all Service Providers participate in ongoing education seminars. This mandated education program focuses upon disability issues that are relevant to the provision of respectful service.™
Zusia's™ standards ensure the quality of our practical, social and intellectual resources. We offer our resources to improve the quality of your life
Dr. Jackie's academic background in research design and methodology makes it possible for her to assess the validity of research data in order to optimize the quality of Zusia's™ BlogSearch information and other communications. Her professional knowledge also provides a foundation for company policies and standards. Zusia’s™ policies and standards are designed to ensure access to high-quality resources for people with medical illness and disability.
Sometimes my situation seems so unfair that it’s hard to get going. How can Zusia’s™ practical resources help me?
Practical resources won't eliminate your hardship or illumine your life's path. But, Zusia's™ practical resources can help you to transform your circumstances into something different, something better. A practical resource can function like a personal assistant, freeing you from routine tasks so that you can focus on your priorities. When it's hard to get going, it may help to remember what's important to you. Disabilities represent obstacles rather than a pre-determined fate. Practical resources won't help you to leap over these obstacles, but they can help you to find your way around them. And, once you've found your way around a barrier, you're on your way to someplace else!
Resources, no matter how excellent, won't erase all of the limitations that are associated with disability or the problems created by these limitations. You'll still struggle on your life's path with obstacles that are the result of disability. But, resources can diminish the impact of these obstacles on your body and your spirit. Physical disability, for example, may limit your opportunity for movement but your dreams can be limitless. And, good resources can create realistic opportunities to achieve what you have imagined.
Zusia's™ goal is to provide resources, including information, directly to people with disabilities. We prefer to avoid euphemisms, such as the word "challenge". A bridge tournament is a challenge. Running for elective office is a challenge. Getting your teenagers to clean up their bedroom is a challenge! Need to go up stairs in a wheelchair? That's a problem, not a challenge. People with disability need access to practical resources--- like properly installed ramps and grab bars---to safeguard their lives and their function. Zusia™ considers knowledge to be our most meaningful resource.
Yes. We believe that our standards are higher. Here are some policies and procedures that distinguish Zusia™:
B. For less than the price of a daily cup of coffee, Gold Members have unrestricted access to hundreds of practical resources.
C.Zusia™ provides centralized and comprehensive resources for people with disability---information, social community and practical resources.
D. All Service Providers who are affiliated with Zusia™ are certified following successful completion of a 10-step assessment process.
E. The structured assessment process for affiliated Service Providers includes:
F. Successful participation by Zusia's™ certified Service Providers in education seminars focused on provision of service to people with disability
No. Dr. Jackie Volk, Zusia’s™ CEO, doesn't offer medical or psychological advice, counseling, or professional services of any kind. Please contact a licensed doctor or other qualified professional/organization to address personal concerns and issues. Zusia™ provides referrals to hundreds of practical resources. If there's a practical resource that you want for your life with disability, and you can't find it in our Service Referral Center, Zusia™ will investigate the availability of these resources through the use of our special request form.
We actively seek member feedback. But, unlike other companies, Zusia™ doesn’t rely exclusively upon feedback. Before we make a resource referral, we want to ensure the quality of this resource by investigating multiple sources of information. Take a look at our Service Provider Application if you're interested in our efforts. This application, which contains more than 100 questions, represents just one stage in a ten stage process than is designed to ensure excellence in our Service Providers.
How can Zusia’s™ information help me if my doctors tell me that I need to realisticly accept my limitations?
People with disabilities share the strengths of human beings regardless of their limitations. Other mammals are biologically "wired" to react to their circumstances, but our unique humanity is expressed in conscious decision to adapt. Our humanity is a gift that creates freedom, yet this freedom is never absolute . No human being is physically free or physically independent. The limitations of disability represent quantitative rather than qualitative differences. People with disability, like all other people, are free to use their intelligence, talent and spirit. And these strengths create possibilities that are as realistic as any limitation.
No. Nothing is easy when you confront the demands and insecurities of life from a position of illness and disability. But, there's a difference between what's easy and what's worthwhile. Access to resources can be the difference between showing up for what's important to you and remaining in bed. Literally.
Service Referral Center
Yes. Zusia™ will promptly respond, contact the Service Provider, and do our very best to help resolve the issue. Zusia'™ aspires to achieve your complete satisfaction. Here's a way to easily reach us.
Absolutely. Finding what you need is what we do.
Yes. Zusia's™ certified Service Providers make house calls! They'll come to your office too. See our Service Referral Center. Our ten stage assessment process is designed to ensure that the people who come to your home are people Dr. Jackie would welcome in her home.
Time and energy are important issues for everyone, but these issues are particularly significant for people with disabilities. Before Zusia™, consumers with disabilities went from store to store, agency to agency, and from website to website, to find what they need. And, if product quality was unacceptable, they invested more time and energy in returning what was purchased. Irresponsible, unreliable Service Providers might require an immediate, difficult search for a replacement. Thanks to Zusia, searching for services, Service Providers and products is no longer necessary. Zusia™ finds what you need and uses a structured assessment process and a unique education program to optimize consistent quality. Perhaps most importantly, high-quality, comprehensive resources for life with disability---intellectual, social and practical resources--- are easily accessible. We believe that you'll find what you need right here, on Zusia's™ website!
Practical resources help people with disabilities to adapt to their body's limitations, freeing them to dream their own dreams and to search for the path that is uniquely theirs.
We want to invest Zusia's™ energy and talent in people with disabilities, a community that is both underserviced and overburdened. In fact, our company evolved from the personal experience of our CEO, Dr. Jackie, with medical illness and disability. Zusia™ doesn't have a “disability test” to determine the disability status of our Members, but all of our services are selected for their usefulness to people with disabilities. Zusia's™ resources include a unique program of education that focuses on the provision of service to people with disabilities.
We want the people who provide services in your home to be the kind of people we welcome in our homes: skilled workers who are honest, considerate and reliable. In order to identify these positive qualities, Zusia™ documents legal status and references. Zusia™ also conducts background checks using independent companies. Our unique education program represents Zusia's™ extraordinary efforts to ensure that Service Providers are both knowledgeable about issues of disability and sensitive to these issues. We want Zusia's™ Service Providers to be sensitive as well as skilled, and we use our ongoing educational seminars to achieve this goal.
Like other companies, we request feedback from our Members. However, Zusia™ aspires to a higher standard. Each Silver and Gold Member receives personal, individual contact information from one of our Team members in order to to facilitate easy and direct communication with Zusia™. If you have a problem, we want to know. (We also welcome positive reactions!) Unlike other companies, Zusia™ doesn’t rely solely on the opinions of members to assess our affiliated Service Providers. We use independent sources of information to objectively document work histories. Zusia™ investigates references, legal work status and employment histories. All Zusia™ applicants are personally interviewed and, if successful, complete a formal application with more than 100 questions. Certified Zusia™ Service Providers participate, on an ongoing basis, in our company’s education program. Zusia™ pursues information about Service Providers from multiple, independent sources. We believe that our comprehensive information creates higher standards of service. A Zusia™ Team member also offers each Silver and Gold Member personal contact information in order to ensure easy and effective communication. Zusia™ not only goes the extra mile for our Members---we carry you there!
Zusia's™ commitment to our Members does not end at their home's front door, as it does with the service providers who arrive from many other companies. We educate Zusia's™ certified Service Providers in order to improve the quality of their service. Our focus is on knowledge relevant to the gracious and proficient provision of service to people with disabilities. Despite our company’s high standards and rigorous assessment process, no person or process is perfect.Through the education of Zusia™ affiliated Service Providers, we hope to enhance their service. We also hope to avoid problems by helping our Service Providers to anticipate them. Zusia's™ education program is designed to benefit both Members and Service Providers. Education creates opportunities for growth and provides a “reality check” on performance. Zusia's™ educational seminars are, to our knowledge, unique. They focus on issues that impact the provision of informed and respectful service to people with disabilities.
The certification of a Zusia™ Service Provider requires successful completion of Zusia's™ 10-step selection process and ongoing, reliable participation in Zusia™ education program. Zusia's™cetification process obtains and validates information about each Service Provider that is consistent with high standards of performance.Our education program builds upon this documented foundation of skillful experience,focusing on the provision of gracious,effective service to people with disabilities. And, you can count on us to promptly and attentively respond if---despite our very best efforts!---you experience a problem in your interaction with a certified Service Provider.
Zusia™ assessment process provides objective information about each applicant’s work history. Selection of Zusia's™ certified Service Providers is based upon a sequential 10-step process that:
Zusia's™ selection process is designed to provide consistently high standards of service and, if successfully completed, leads to certification as an affiliated Service Provider. Maintenance of certification as a Service Provider is contingent upon successful, reliable participation in Zusia's™ ongoing education program.
Our education program focuses on provision of gracious, capable service to people with disabilities. And, you can count on us to promptly and attentively respond if---despite our very best efforts!---you experience a problem in your interaction with a certified Service Provider.
Resources not only even the playing field for people with disability---resources determine who gets a chance to compete. Practical resources create opportunity in daily life, and encourage the expression of personal interests and talents. They can help people to anticipate and avoid problems, and to better cope with those problems that can't be avoided. It is critical, under all circumstances related to disability, that practical resources are sufficient and not merely symbolic. For example, a ramp outside of every doorway on a college campus won't help qualified students with wheelchairs to receive an education unless there's accessible transportation to and from the campus---and affordable tuition!
Zusia™ offers a multitude of personal services . Here are a examples of what our certified Service Providers will make every effort to do for you:
Yes. There's a huge difference. Zusia’™is, to our knowledge, the only American company to offer comprehensive resources to people with medical illness and disabilities. You'll find carefully researched articles, social community, and hundreds of practical resources.Zusia’s™ certified Service Providers successfully participate in a unique, ongoing education program. This program is designed to optimize the reliable and respectful provision of service to people with disability. Objective data stand behind our resources, not personal opinion. Unlike many other companies, Zusias™ prioritize facts in assessing our resources. Our emphasis upon research means that we can tell the difference between good resources and good advertising. Zusia™ values and seeks the opinions of our Members, and we provide them to you. But, we work hard to "grade" our resources before you reach for a red pencil. If there's a problem, we want it to be identified by Zusia™---first and finally. We don't want you to have a negative experience. Our goal is to present you with resources that receive an "A."
Are Zusia’s™ service referrals intended for people who don’t deal with medical illness and disability?
No. There are plenty of resources available to people who don't confront medical illness and disability. And, it's generally a lot easier for these people to run around and look for what they want!
People with disabilities deserve access to practical resources that can help them to enjoy their lives, express their talents, achieve their goals and optimize their function. Yet, there are comparatively few practical resources available to people with disabilities. Those that exist are difficult to find and compare, particularly when an individual experiences sensory, mobility, intellectual or communication impairment. Practical approaches to situations are often the most effective, no matter how complex the circumstances. Zusia™ offers easy access to practical resources that can be helpful in daily life. These resources can provide commonsense solutions to the common problems of disability, and create opportunities for self- expression, relationships, work and other accomplishments.
If a service is available and legal, Zusia™ will find it . And we'll search for free, personally notifying you of the results.
Yes. If you're looking for answers to existential problems, stop reading now. We don't know why good people suffer. But, we do know a lot about the day to day problems of good people who live with medical illness and disability. And, while waiting for the philosophers to enlighten us, we know how to help you get things done---better and faster.
Yes. Aesthetics are an important factor in creating a positive environment, regardless of whether or not a family member lives with disability.
People with disability deserve an attractive home as well as a safe and functional one. For example, the grab bars in your home must be properly installed to support your body’s weight if you slip. But, your grab bar can be properly installed without making your bathroom look like you live in a federal prison.
Zusia™not only refers you to qualified Service Providers, we tell you where to find decorative designs and finishes. And, if you don't have the time or interest to attend to these issues, our Service Referral Center will find you a decorator!
Zusia’s™Service Referral Center gives information about practical resources to people who live with medical illness and disability. Then, Zusia™ makes these resources---hundreds of them!--- easily available.
Daily life is more manageable and enjoyable with personal service, and all of Zusia's™ referrals are easily affordable. Unrestricted referrals to personal service cost no more than a daily cup of coffee.
Our assessment process is designed to ensure that Zusia’s™ certified Service Providers are experienced, reliable and respectful. Legal work status is documented and references are confirmed. All Service Providers complete background checks by an independent company, and Service Providers consent to make this information available to you. You can make arrangements about the services, schedules and fees you prefer directly with your Service Provider.
Zusia™ conducts free , ongoing seminars for all certified Service Providers, and successful participation is a prerequisite for maintenance of certification. Zusia's™ education program is designed to to enhance knowledge of disability issues related to the provision of service, and sensitivity in responding to these issues.
No. Neither the BlogSearch nor our CEO, Dr. Jackie Volk, would presume to tell you what to do about your disability--- or any other aspect of your life.Zusia™ offers its BlogSearch because we believe that information can enhance personal judgment. If you need medical diagnosis or treatment, you can consult a physician. You can consult a licensed counselor if you want counseling. In all other circumstances, you can consult with someone who has expertise and the appropriate professional credentials. Zusia™ certainly hopes that our resources will help you to reach you goals, but we'll never chose them for you!
The purpose of the BlogSearch is the purpose of our company; to bring our community of Silver and Gold Members carefully researched information about subjects that are important to people with medical illness and disability. We believe that knowledge is the most valuable basis for decisions. The BlogSearch is a source of information. It is also a source of concepts that can be interpreted from different perspectives, including your own.Zusia™ hopes that our BlogSearch will serve as a catalyst for personal thought and meaningful discussion within the disability community---and beyond.
Don't worry. Dr. Jackie, Zusia's™ CEO , spent anxious years studying research design and methodology in graduate school. From these experiences, she developed a tendency toward migraine--- and the belief that no one should confront A Research Statistic alone and without help! Our BlogSearch analyzes research data and presents clear summaries that can be easily understood and quickly read.We bring you "hard" data because it's important, but we make certain that what we write is easy to read.
No. You'll find personal accounts of hardship only when they involve issues that are relevant to the community of people with disabilities. If you have a disability, you already know how hard it is. That's why Zusia emphasizes practical information and access to personal services. We believe that people with disability want their daily life to have less drama and more opportunities.
A BlogSearch integrates knowledge found in traditional sources of scholarship within the form of a contemporary personal blog. Personal experience is critical to the BlogSearch process, creating a narrow but reliable bridge to complex meaning. Scholarship broadens the connection to meaning, communicating diverse personal experience though historical media. Sources of traditional scholarship include include culture, philosophy, physical science, social science, history, literature, linguistics and anthropology. A BlogSearch weaves separate threads of personal and historical experience until, over time, patterns becomes perceptible. Once patterns are perceived as meaningful, the BlogSearch considers them from different perspectives. The BlogSearch understands personal experience within the vast and complex context of human experience.
No. We hope that our BlogSearch will inspire you to engage in ongoing reflection and discussion. You'll learn about the experiences and perspectives of people with disabilities, including those of Zusia's™ CEO, Dr. Jackie. Research data will be discussed in meaningful terms and issues of public policy will be reviewed. You can consider the implications of this material for your own life and, also, for the community of people with disability. But, you won't find inspirational messages. We believe that access to resources---most particularly, knowledge--- is a priority for people with disability. If you use a wheelchair and don't own an adapted car, inspiration won't get you to an important appointment. However, practical information about accessible public and private transportation can get you where you want to go. And, if you're late because of a problem with the transportation, knowing where to file a complaint may help to you arrive early the next time!
The name BlogSearch combines the word "blog" and "(re)search", and is a unique form of communication about medical illness and disability. Zusia's ™ BlogSearch communicates “hard” research data in a form that's easy to read. Emphasis in each BlogSearch is upon understanding through the search for knowledge. Our BlogSearchis written by the company's CEO, Dr. Jackie Volk, who is a clinical psychologist and a cancer survivor with health-related disability. The demands that disability place upon an individual and family members are known to Dr. Jackie from her direct experience of these realities and, also, from her professional experiences. Educated in research and statistics at Northwestern University Medical School, Dr. Jackie is trained to perceive meaningful information through a haze of fine print and complicated language. As a result of her leadership, Zusia™ has implemented policies and procedures that facilitate the acquisition of information. Zusia's™ BlogSearch is a critical resource that represents a commitment to knowledge and to the search for understanding.