In a significant move to enhance accessibility in health care, the Justice Department has announced proposed rulemaking regarding Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The proposed rule focuses on improving access to Medical Diagnostic Equipment (MDE) for people with disabilities, covering equipment such as medical examination tables, weight scales, dental chairs, x-ray machines, and mammography equipment.
Accessible MDE is crucial for individuals with disabilities to have equal access to medical care. The proposed rule aims to establish technical standards that clarify the obligations of public entities, including hospitals and health care clinics operated by state or local governments, under the ADA. The department has received complaints highlighting the challenges faced by individuals with disabilities due to inaccessible MDE, leading to instances where basic and vital health care, such as obtaining accurate weights before surgery, is compromised.
Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division emphasized the significance of accessible MDE in ensuring equal access to medical care.
The department encourages public input on the proposed rule, which will be available for review on the Federal Register’s website. A fact sheet providing information about the proposed rule will also be accessible shortly on ADA.gov. The public is invited to submit comments once the proposed rule is published, with a 30-day comment period. Comments can be submitted online.
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