ADA and HIPAA
MAKING THE WEB SAFE AND ACCESSIBLE TO ALL
ADA and HIPAA
Don't simply do it to comply, rather because it is the right thing to do!
ADA and HIPAA
Improve the accessibility of your medical website
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is not known to many practices. The majority of people think that ADA compliance only applies to your facility and job accommodations.
In accordance with Title II of the Act, “places of public accommodation” cannot exclude persons with disabilities from participating in activities open to everyone else. A website is public. No matter how many employees or how large your practice may be, it is required to comply with the ADA. In fact, the law views your website as a piece of real estate for purposes of the ADA.
It is not unusual for people to wonder how they missed this. ADA compliance is not a new requirement for websites, but because enforcement has not been a focus, many businesses, including medical practices, have not taken the time to modify their websites in order to comply with ADA requirements. For more than a decade, federal websites have been in compliance with the Act.
- If there is audio content in the form of videos or sound files, a transcript will be available for those who are unable to hear it. Captions must also be enabled by default for videos.
- There must be alternatives to Flash on your website if it uses the technology.
- You should be able to navigate the home page of your site using only a keyboard (by tabbing through links) and screen reader software. The page should also follow standard web conventions for how visitors can navigate backwards and forwards in the browser.
- Screen readers or other accessible technologies must be able to access all the content on your site. It also includes links, images, and forms that may be accessed using adaptive equipment by people with disabilities. You must also use alternative text on every image you upload (the alt attribute provides a brief description of what is in an image so that screen readers will be able to read it out to their use
Specifically, this policy pertains to healthcare providers, health plans, clearinghouses (companies that process claims), data and information included in a standard transaction for banking or insurance purposes, as well as their business associates who have access to sensitive information.
The HIPAA website requires that any form asking for sensitive information contain a link at the top or bottom with specific details about how the information will be used.
Accessibility: Many of these requirements are covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but HIPAA also includes requirements for accessibility to people with disabilities.
It is important to note that this section of HIPAA applies to businesses that outsource work that involves PHI. It is necessary to set up a business associate agreement that outlines what they may and may not do with the data they access through your site.
Security: In order to comply with this section of HIPAA, you must have reasonable security measures in place.
TeleHealth IT is here to assist you if you are not sure where to begin. Get in touch with us today so that we can conduct an audit of your website and determine what needs to be done to achieve compliance with HIPAA and ADA, as well as designing your complete medical digital marketing strategy.