Advancing Equal Access to Diagnostic Services: Recommendations on Standards for the Design of Medical Diagnostic Equipment for Adults with Disabilities

The final report of the Medical Diagnostic Equipment Accessibility Standards Advisory Committee

December 6th, 2013


Acknowledgements

Over the course of ten months, members of the Medical Diagnostic Equipment Accessibility Standards Advisory Committee committed their extensive expertise, time, and energy to the intensive deliberative process that yielded the recommendations described in this report. Advisory Committee members made these considerable contributions in a spirit of mutual cooperation and with a common goal to improve the accessibility of medical diagnostic equipment. As does the law, Advisory Committee members believe that persons with disabilities should have full and equal access to the diagnostic services that can maximize their health, well-being, and quality of life.

Throughout their deliberations, many individuals helped inform the Advisory Committee about critical issues relating to the specification of accessibility standards. Committee members extend special appreciation to Edward Steinfeld, Arch.D., AIA, R.A., and Clive D’Souza, M.S., Ph.D. Candidate, of the Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access at the State University of New York at Buffalo, who generously donated time and research expertise to the work of the Advisory Committee and its Subcommittees. As described in Section 3 of this report, other individuals also volunteered their time and expertise to educate the Advisory Committee about various issues relating to the accessibility of medical diagnostic equipment for adults with disabilities. The Committee thanks them for their essential contributions to this work.

This report would not exist without the tireless efforts of the Editorial Committee, whose work began with a core group of Advisory Committee volunteers -- Carol Bradley, Janice Carroll, Lisa I. Iezzoni, John Jaeckle, and Bob Menke – later productively supplemented by the inclusion of Mark E. Derry and June Isaacson Kailes. Dr. Iezzoni, who chaired both the Advisory Committee and its Editorial Committee, served as the lead editor; she developed, structured, edited, and gave an overall voice to this document. Ms. Bradley cheerfully and resolutely took on the herculean task of editing the “heart” of this report: Section 5, which presents the Advisory Committee’s recommendations for accessibility standards. Editorial Committee members dedicated many hours to thoughtful writing, extensive critiquing, and deliberating with their colleagues to finalize this report.

As noted above, Advisory Committee members believe that all people should have equal access to medical diagnostic services. Committee members intend for their recommendations and this report to establish the foundation for the future development of accessible medical equipment. Furthermore, they hope that such national accessibility standards will catalyze development of new equipment designs that meet the accessibility needs of Americans of all abilities.