The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): How HMS Contributes to Equality for All
- July 26, 2021
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Since our founding in 2002, Healthcare Management Solutions, LLC (HMS) has sought to live up to both the letter and the spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Passage of the ADA in 1990 was a watershed event not only for people with a physical or mental impairment, but also for those who strive to ensure that everyone in our society is treated fairly, equally, and with dignity.
“At HMS, we truly are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers,” said HMS President Leah Heimbach. “I’ll never forget the day — July 26, 1990 — when the ADA was signed into law. It marked a real turning point for millions of disabled Americans.”
About the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
The Americans with Disabilities Act is a federal law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. This includes discrimination within a job, school, form of transportation, and any other public or private place. The law ensures that any individual with a disability gets the same treatment, opportunities, and rights as everyone else. The Act provides an individual who has a disability with legal protections from inequality and discrimination.
While some disabilities can be seen, such as the need for a wheelchair, walker, or cane, others are less obvious, such as hearing loss, blindness/low vision, and intellectual disabilities. Still others are even more invisible to most people, including cancer, HIV, and epilepsy. Many other diseases, conditions, and limitations are included within the scope of ADA-protected disabilities.
Our Support of the ADA
“Protecting people with disabilities is just as important as protecting individuals of different races, nationalities, religions, ages, and orientations,” said Heimbach. “Imagine if you were discriminated against for your height, or something else completely out of your control. You would feel violated, and you would want others to help you in the fight for equality, humanity, and respect.”
Title III of the ADA requires that businesses, state and local governments, and nonprofit services providers make accommodations for those who have disabilities to access the same services as patrons who do not have disabilities. HMS devotes an entire team to ensure that all agency deliverables such as reports, surveys, slide presentations, and newsletters, are compliant with the ADA, Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, and Health & Human Services (HHS) guidelines.
HMS provides support in many different ways.
- For audio recordings and videos, we provide closed captioning and transcripts so those who are hearing impaired can still enjoy the content produced. HMS provides incredible attention-to-detail, quality transcriptions, and quick turnaround times.
- HMS subject matter leaders keep all our teams updated on any regulation changes or requirements to ensure we are providing top-tier service.
- Our work benefits countless people, from our survey, consulting, and technical support, to our quality assurance, regulatory compliance and operational improvements, to our IT services and solutions.
“It would be difficult for a person with a visual or hearing impairment to get information out of these documents without the work we do,” said Heimbach. “We help government agencies make sure that anyone who has those impairments can access what they need.”
- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) published a helpful booklet, Increasing the Physical Accessibility of Health Care Facilities, in 2017 (PDF).
- The U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division provides ADA information and technical assistance online at ADA.gov.
- The U.S. Department of Labor also maintains extensive ADA guidance at https://www.dol.gov/general/topic/disability/ada.
- The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provides employment-related ADA guidance at https://www.eeoc.gov/disability-discrimination.
- The National Council on Disability (ncd.gov) offers an extensive history on the development of the ADA.