Office-based Physical Accessibility
According to a 2008 study, physical accessibility of healthcare facilities, clinics, and hospitals is one of the largest barriers facing rural residents with disabilities. Many clinics in rural communities have not been updated to the same standards that are found in urban locations. In order to make a medical office accessible to people with disabilities, clinics should look at features both outside and inside the clinic.
- Designated, accessible parking for cars and vans
- Accessible entrances without stairs
- Ramps and appropriate sidewalk features for wheelchairs and walkers
- Sidewalks and roads clear of debris and potholes
- Level exterior door handles for easy reach
- Push-button operated exterior doors
- Level interior door handles for easy reach
- Clear floors for safety
- Adequate space to maneuver through halls and doorways
- Wheelchair height accessible check-in desks and counters
- Restrooms with appropriately sized toilet stalls, grab bars, and sinks at wheelchair height
- TTY telephone/hearing aid compatible phones
- Wheelchair accessible scales
- Exam tables and chairs that are adjustable and allow for independent transfer
- Accessible diagnostic equipment
Program Clearinghouse Examples
Resources to Learn More
2010 ADA Standards for
This document details the regulations for new construction as well as alterations for current buildings to make them compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines.
Organization(s): U.S. Department of Justice
Access to Medical Care for Individuals with
Overview of clinic accessibility according to the Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines. Provides specific details for those with mobility disabilities and how they can use healthcare.
Organization(s): U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Harris Family Center for Disability and Health Policy Resources
This webpage contains a number of resources that can be used to assist communities and programs interested in reducing physical access barriers to healthcare services. Resources range from communication, medical equipment, and physical structures to policies and insurance coverage.
Organization(s): Harris Family Center for Disability and Health Policy
Facilities: Access and Accommodations Resource Toolkit
A comprehensive list of resources to improve access to healthcare services for people with disabilities including webinars, national standards and guidelines.
Organization(s): Montana Disability and Health Program
Readily Achievable Barrier Removal:
Checklist for Existing Facilities
A checklist for buildings to identify barriers as well as possible solutions that can be used to remove the barriers.
Organization(s): Institute for Human-Centered Design, ADA National Network
VA Barrier Free Design
Standard: A Supplement to the Architectural Barriers Act Accessibility Standards
This document describes the requirements to meet barrier free guidelines that are determined by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Organization(s): U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs