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Digital Accessibility is More Critical Than Ever Before

An inaccessible website creates barriers that can prevent patients with disabilities from reviewing insurance claims, accessing personal health records, searching for providers, scheduling appointments, and many other healthcare activities commonly available online.

Now, more than ever before, online access to healthcare services and information is vital for patients with disabilities — both for their safety and their privacy.

Over the last 20 years Level Access has worked with countless healthcare organizations to ensure their websites and mobile apps are accessible for their patients.

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Image of a smartphone with a healthcare application open

Real Patients. Real Issues.

A patient with low vision tries to check in at an urgent care center, but the kiosk does not allow him to zoom in to read the screen. He must say his personal information out loud so someone else can use the kiosk for him.

The portal for an insurance company contains helpful videos on various wellness topics. However, they have not been captioned or transcribed, so a deaf patient is unable to benefit from them.

What is Digital Accessibility?

Digital accessibility refers to the ability of users with disabilities to effectively use information technology (IT) systems including websites, mobile or web-based applications, software, and hardware. Digital accessibility is generally concerned with ensuring that IT systems are designed in such a way that they interact appropriately with assistive technologies.

Assistive technologies can include:

  • Screen readers, Braille keypads, or screen magnification software so users who are blind or low vision can read your content.
  • Voice recognition software that helps those with mobility disabilities (even arthritis) navigate the web and type using only their voice.
  • Head pointers and switch devices that allow those with more limited movement navigate without using their hands or a traditional mouse.

Check out the Understanding Assistive Technology Series to learn more about how your customers with disabilities use AT to access your website or mobile app.

Illustration of a laptop with pop-up windows of assistive technology
tablet sign in page for Electronic Medical Records

Section 1557 and You

The Law:  Section 1557 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA, Obamacare)

First passed: 2010

Applies to: Healthcare organizations

Requires: Information and communications technology (ICT) must be accessible to persons with disabilities.

ICT includes: software, websites, web applications, and hardware.

Read more about Section 1557 requirements.