Accessibility Options

Contact Information

Center for Disabilities Studies
University of Delaware
461 Wyoming Road
Newark DE 19716
Phone: 302-831-6974
TDD: 302-831-4689
Email: info@gohdwd.org

Accessibility

woman with blood pressure cuff on arm

Accessibility is the ability for services or places to be used or reached. Accessibility features for individuals with disabilities include allowing access to the same services and structures as those individuals without disabilities. Physical accessibility can include the availability of accessible parking spots, entrances, paths and restrooms. Many individuals with disabilities have difficulty acquiring access to adequate health care. Barriers that individuals face include physical inaccessibility of health care facilities, medical equipment and many additional factors that affect the quality of services received by the individual.

In order to receive the care they deserve, individuals with physical limitations must be able to enter the health care provider’s office and have access to examination rooms that accommodate their specific needs. Not all health care providers have appropriate accommodations for their patients with disabilities, such as informational materials in alternate formats. Additionally, a large barrier for individuals with disabilities is the lack of medical facilities that accept certain health insurance plans. Transportation is also a large barrier with respect to access for many individuals with disabilities.

In addition to physical accessibility, it is important for public places to follow guidelines for accessibility in written documents, posted information, policies, procedures and provisions. Medical professionals are responsible for providing reasonable accommodations for their patients to prevent discrimination and barred access.

The guidelines have been established by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and can be accessed at http://www.ada.gov. Some examples of necessary provisions include sign language interpreters and alternate version text documents.

Another document that we distribute to promote inclusive practices is a one-page fact sheet entitled, Accessibility in Your Practice. This offers simple tips for health care providers and advocates for integrating a question about needed accommodations in all appointment scheduling conversations.  Click here to view this document online.

For more information on accessibility, visit our resources below.