Some dentists have been notified that their website does not meet the standards established by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Smile Savvy is aware of these notifications and wants to assure our clients that we make every effort to ensure that your website meets these guidelines.
To be compliant, dentists should refer to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) standards for website accessibility. These guidelines are highly technical, and are not legal guidelines, but typically go above and beyond the legal standards set forth by the ADA. The legal standards have not yet been clearly defined, and likely won’t be until 2018.
The purpose of the ADA guidelines is to ensure that websites can be read and interacted with by people with a wide range of disabilities. Websites must use coding that is readable by assistive technologies to be compliant under the ADA. Assistive technologies are utilized by the end-user so that their computer can interpret your website in a way that they understand. An example of assistive technologies would be screen-readers, which help blind people navigate the internet by reading page out loud.
Smile Savvy creates each of our websites following a basic set of best practices that ensure ADA compliance. However, many ADA compliance issues are incumbent upon your dental office. For example: documents and forms online – such as appointment request forms and new patient forms – should have an equivalent that can be viewed or completed in person; nothing should be 100% dependent upon a person’s ability to use a particular technology to complete a form.
We work diligently to make our websites accessible by all audiences; however, we are not lawyers or compliance officers, so we cannot make legal recommendations about ADA compliance. But, we make a strong effort to notify our clients of any legal changes that may affect their website, and to stay on top of current policies and trends.
If there are specific issues of which you’ve been notified, please contact us. We will research and remedy any compliance issue your dental website may have.