Access Currents: September/ October 2012

 

 

Board pill bottleOrganizes Working Group on Access to Drug Labels
The Board is undertaking an initiative to improve access to prescription drug labels. As part of this effort, the Board has organized a stakeholder working group to develop best practices for making information on prescription drug container labels accessible to people who are blind or visually impaired or who are elderly. This group includes representatives from advocacy organizations and from industry, including:

  • American Council of the Blind
  • American Foundation for the Blind
  • AARP
  • Blinded Veterans Association
  • Council of Citizens with Low Vision International
  • CVS/ Caremark
  • Express Scripts
  • Metro Washington Association of the Deaf Blind
  • National Community Pharmacists Association
  • National Council on Aging
  • National Council on Independent Living
  • National Council on Patient Information and Education
  • National Federation of the Blind
  • Rite Aid
  • Target
  • U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention
  • Wal-Mart
  • Walgreens

The working group will develop best practices for pharmacies on providing independent access to prescription drug container labels. Various alternatives will be explored, including braille, large print labels, and auditory technologies such as "talking bottles" and radio frequency identification tags. The Board gained the responsibility to address this issue under the "Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act" which was signed into law in July. The law also calls upon the National Council on Disability to conduct an informational and educational campaign in cooperation with the stakeholder working group to inform the public, including people with disabilities and pharmacists, of the best practices.

For further information, contact Susan Crawford at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , (202) 272-0029 (v), or (202) 272-0082 (TTY). Those interested in this initiative can sign up to receive further updates.


Public Comments on Bus Access Ramps Due October 31
As part of its update of the ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Transportation Vehicles, the Board is accepting public comments on bus access ramps. Specifically, the Board seeks information on recent bus ramp designs that allow a portion of deployed ramps to remain inside the vehicle to minimize their exterior projection. The new ramp designs are responsive to the Board’s proposed reduction in ramp slope but may impact usability. Questions have arisen about this type of design, including grade breaks that occur on ramp runs, reduced maneuvering space at the top of ramps, and access to fare collection devices.

As previously noted, the Board has re-opened the rulemaking docket in order to collect additional information and feedback from the public on bus ramps. This information will be used to finalize proposed updates to sections of the guidelines covering buses and vans. Comments are due October 31 and can be submitted through regulations.gov. Comments received after this date will be considered to the extent practicable. The Board held public meetings on this subject in Washington, D.C. on September 19 and in Seattle at the annual meeting of the American Public Transportation Association on October 2.

For further information, visit the Board’s website or contact Scott Windley at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , (202) 272-0025 (voice), or (202) 272-0028 (TTY).


Upcoming Board Webinars
The next webinar in the Board's monthly series will take place November 1 from 2:30 – 4:00 (ET) and will cover access to historic buildings and facilities. The session will focus on addressing accessibility in planned alterations to qualified historic facilities and review permitted exceptions where State Historic Preservation officials determine that compliance would threaten or destroy a facility’s historic significance.

The following webinar, to be held December 6 from 2:30 - 4:00 (ET), will provide an overview and update on new accessibility standards the Board is developing for medical diagnostic equipment.

The webinar series is made available in cooperation with the ADA National Network. For more information, including registration instructions, visit www.accessibilityonline.org. Questions for webinars can be submitted in advance through this website. Archived copies of previous Board webinars are also available on the site.


Access Currents is a free newsletter issued by the Access Board every other month by mail and e-mail. Send questions or comments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (800) 872-2253 ext. 0026 (voice) or (800) 993-2822 (TTY). Mailing address: 1331 F Street, N.W., Suite 1000; Washington, D.C. 20004-1111.