[Nfbnet-members-list] AG HEALEY AND NATIONAL FEDERATION OF THE BLIND ANNOUNCE AGREEMENT TO MAKE HEALTH CARE KIOSKS ACCESSIBLE TO BLIND CONSUMERS
KMorey at nfb.org
Wed Jul 27 14:03:24 UTC 2016
RELEASE MEDIA CONTACT:
Emalie Gainey (AGO)
AG HEALEY and national federation of the blind
ANNOUNCE AGREEMENT TO MAKE HEALTH CARE KIOSKS ACCESSIBLE TO BLIND CONSUMERS
Announcement Marks 26th Anniversary of Americans with Disabilities Act
BOSTON On the 26th anniversary of the passage
of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA),
Attorney General Maura Healey and the National
Federation of the Blind (NFB) announced a
first-of-its-kind agreement with Pursuant Health,
Inc. to make its self-service health care kiosks
accessible to blind consumers.
The agreement reached with Pursuant Health, an
Atlanta-based company that manufactures and
operates thousands of self-service health care
kiosks in retail stores nationwide, provides
meaningful benefits to individuals nationwide who
are blind or who have low vision, including
27,000 Massachusetts residents who are legally blind.
Technology should be used to improve peoples
lives, not create barriers, said AG Healey. We
must take steps to ensure that all Massachusetts
residents have equal access to health care
services, and that technology is accessible to
consumers with disabilities. We are pleased to
have worked with the NFB and Pursuant Health to make these kiosks accessible.
Pursuant Healths kiosks offer important
biometric health screenings, including vision
assessments, blood pressure screening, weight and
BMI assessments, and pain management advice.
Health risks and recommendations for further
testing or treatment are displayed on the kiosk
or sent to the consumer via email. Until now,
however, blind consumers have not been able to use the kiosks effectively.
Living the lives we want as blind people
includes monitoring our own health so that we can
take steps to maintain or improve it, said Mark
A. Riccobono, President of the NFB. Health
information has the potential to be more
accessible than ever to the blind with
twenty-first-century technology, but only if the
manufacturers of technology keep accessibility in
mind. We are delighted to have reached this
agreement with Pursuant Health, working with the
outstanding civil rights advocates in Attorney
General Healeys office, and believe that it will
result in health information kiosks that set an industry-leading example.
According to the terms of the agreement, Pursuant
Health will implement a detailed project plan to
make their kiosks and website accessible to
consumers who are blind or visually impaired. The
kiosks will be made accessible over time and will
be reformatted to provide audio instructions and
easily locatable hot spots on the kiosk screens
to help blind consumers navigate the system.
Pursuant Health will also offer membership
options to make it easier for blind consumers to
activate the kiosks and track their individual health assessments.
Finally, Pursuant Health will make payments
totaling $95,000 to the AGs Office and the NFB,
which will be used to further improve access and
opportunity for individuals with disabilities.
Massachusetts Commission for the Blind applauds
the efforts of Attorney General Healey for
negotiating a settlement that takes one more
important step closer to providing equal access
to technology and health care, said MCB Commissioner Paul Saner.
The agreement is the most recent result of
collaboration between the AGs Office and the
NFB. Past collaborations have included making
iTunes services and
ATMs fully and equally accessible to blind consumers.
State and federal laws not only
prohibit disparate treatment of individuals with
disabilities in employment and housing, but also
require that all businesses operating places of
public accommodation provide people with
disabilities with full and equal enjoyment of
their goods, services, and facilities.
Continuing her efforts to protect the civil
rights of all Massachusetts residents,
Healey formed a Disability Rights Advisory
Committee in July 2015. The Committee is
comprised of advocates and experts who meet on a
regular basis to consult with and advise AG
Healey and her staff on matters pertaining to
inclusion, access, and equality for individuals
with disabilities. Please click
for more information on AG Healeys disability rights work since taking office.
This matter was handled by Assistant Attorney
General Genevieve C. Nadeau, Chief of AG Healeys
Civil Rights Division on behalf of the
Commonwealth, and by Daniel F. Goldstein of the
Baltimore firm Brown, Goldstein & Levy, LLP on behalf of the NFB.
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