Agreement reached to make health care kiosks accessible to people with visual disabilities

Pursuant Health will make its thousands of self-service health care kiosks accessible to people with visual disabilities, under a first-of-its-kind agreement announced July 26.

“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 National Federation of the Blind, in a news release. “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.”

The kiosks, located in retail stores across the country, provide consumers access to a range of biometric health screening information, including vision assessments, blood pressure screening, weight and Body Mass Index assessments, and pain management advice.

Under the agreement, Pursuant Health will collaborate with the NFB and the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office to implement a project plan to make its services available to people who are blind or visually impaired. Modifications include audio instructions and “easily locatable hot spots” on the kiosks’ screens, according to the news release.

The Atlanta-based corporation will also provide new membership options for consumers with visual disabilities and pay $95,000 to the AG’s office and NFB to further improve access.

“Technology should be used to improve people’s lives, not create barriers,” Massachusetts AG Maura Healey said in a news release. “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.”

Daniel F. Goldsteinan, an attorney with Brown, Goldstein & Levy, LLP, assisted the NFB in the negotations.