Improving Access for Disabled Patients
In this section:
- Main Entrance
- Emergency Exits
- Layout of the Practice
- Accessibility for those with Impaired Hearing
- Accessibility for those with Impaired Sight
- Accessibility for those with Learning Disabilities
- Changing Staff Practices to improve Accessibility
The principles of good practice are that, as far as possible, disabled patients receive goods and services in the same way as other patients who are not disabled. The Equality Act 2010 requires all physical barriers to providing a service to disabled people to be removed, where reasonable and practicable.
It is important to note that there are a wide range of disabilities, including sight impairments and mobility impairments, and patients with disabilities can benefit from a range of improvements that are easy to implement at little or no cost e.g. better signage and a well-planned logical layout within premises. Some changes might be more costly and might be best incorporated into the practice’s maintenance programme or carried out during a refurbishment.
Some suggestions for improving access for disabled people are provided in the sections listed above. Note that many changes that will improve access for disabled people will also improve access to elderly patients and patients with pushchairs. See also Access Survey for further advice on identifying access problems and areas for improvement.