Improving Access to Care for People with Disabilities

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The CMS Office of Minority Health works to ensure that people with disabilities receive equal access to quality health care information and services. Use this page to find tools and resources that can help you improve services and help patients understand their rights.

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Spotlight

Getting the Care You Need: A Guide for People with Disabilities – English (PDF)

Part of our strategy to foster innovation is giving you tools and resources to empower patients. Download and share this access to care guide for people with disabilities. A Braille version is also available. To request a physical copy, please contact the HealthEquityTA@cms.hhs.gov mailbox.

This resource is available in eight languages:

Arabic / ةي برع ل (PDF)
Chinese / 中文 (PDF)
English (PDF)
Haitian Creole / Kreyòl Ayisyen (PDF)
Korean / 한국어(PDF)
Russian / Русский (PDF)
Spanish / Español (PDF)
Vietnamese / TIẾNG VIỆT (PDF)

Modernizing Health Care to Improve Physical Accessibility


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How to Improve Physical Accessibility at Your Health Care Facility (PDF): This resource helps health care providers, staff, and administrators in a variety of outpatient settings improve the accessibility of their health care facility. It outlines physical barriers people may face, highlights actions health care facilities can take to assess accessibility, and describes ways to design and implement programs and policies that eliminate barriers for people with disabilities.

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A Primer for Providers (PDF): This resource helps staff in health care settings improve quality, satisfaction, and physical accessibility for people with disabilities. This primer offers strategies and resources to remove barriers and deliver high-quality, patient-centered, and physically accessible care for individuals with disabilities.

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Resources Inventory (PDF): The resources in this inventory include guidance on how to increase physical accessibility of medical services, tools to assess your practice or facility's accessibility, and tips and training materials to support efforts to reduce barriers and improve quality of care for individuals with disabilities.

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Training: This free web-based training course offers solutions for increasing the physical accessibility of health care settings and services for people with disabilities.


Modernizing Health Care to Improve Communication Accessibility


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Individuals Who Are Blind or Have Low Vision (PDF): When serving a patient who is blind or has low vision it is important for an organization to plan how it will provide effective, accessible communication. This resource describes how to assess practices, develop communication plans, and be prepared to implement accessible services.

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Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (PDF): When serving a patient who is deaf or hard of hearing it is important for an organization to plan how it will provide effective, accessible communication. This resource describes how to assess practices, develop communication plans, and be prepared to implement accessible services.


Navigating Health Care with a Disability – Our Stories: Video Vignettes


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Navigating Health Care with a Disability: Our Stories, a Focus on People with Disabilities (Video): Hear testimonials from people with disabilities where they describe their experience accessing health care.

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Navigating Health Care with a Disability: Our Stories, a Focus on the Provider (Video): Learn how health care organizations and providers can improve accessibility and care for people with disabilities.


Data Highlights


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Data Highlight: How Does Disability Affect Access to Health Care for Dual Eligible Beneficiaries? (PDF): This data highlight examines how a disability affects access to health care for Medicare and Medicare dual eligible enrollees.


Issue Briefs


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Issue Brief: Improving Health Care for Adults with Disabilities (PDF): This issue brief outlines data sources that health care organizations and researchers can use to better understand the impact that social determinants of health have on people with disabilities. It also provides data sources and examples of how data is useful in identifying opportunities for quality improvement in health care.

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Issue Brief: Increasing the Physical Accessibility of Health Care Facilities (PDF): One of the most prominent challenges for people with physical disabilities is overcoming the barriers to entering and navigating health care facilities. This brief provides an overview of why physical accessibility is important for people with disabilities, discusses laws enacted to promote accessibility, provides examples of federal and state-level efforts to increase accessibility, and offers suggestions for improving physical accessibility of health care facilities on a broader scale.

Page Last Modified:
01/18/2023 11:12 PM