UF Health Accessibility Policy
Accessibility involves a wide range of disabilities, including visual, auditory, physical, speech, cognitive, language, learning, and neurological disabilities. Although these guidelines cover a wide range of issues, they are not able to address the needs of people with all types, degrees, and combinations of disability. These guidelines also make Web content more usable by older individuals with changing abilities due to aging and often improve usability for users in general. – WCAG
Introduction to Web Accessibility
UF Health’s web presence promotes patient care, and educational and research activities by providing current and effective interactive communication and on-line service to a wide audience in support of our vision. We embrace web accessibility as a concrete demonstration of our core values: excellence, trust, accountability, innovation, teamwork, integrity, and diversity. We believe that accessible design is good design.
We strive to be at the leading edge in accessible site design not simply for the purpose of compliance with the law, but because it is the right thing to do for our patients, students, faculty, employees and other site visitors. We are committed to providing up to the minute technical tools to UF Health web designers in support of this effort.
This section contains resources that enable you to create web pages that are accessible for people with disabilities. Web accessibility is a process, not an end point. Making your site accessible:
- Lets you feel empathy for users struggling to effectively use the web as a resource
- Provides something which persons with special needs appreciate
- Demonstrates the investment you make in your site
- Improves search engine optimization (SEO), making it easier to find your website
Ideally, accessibility strategies facilitate organized and structured content, clean layouts and easy-to-read text.
Legal and Regulatory Compliance
Section 508 of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
UF Health sites comply with the legal requirements of WCAG2.0 and Section 508 of the American’s with Disabilities Act.
State of Florida’s Accessibility Statement
We also comply with the State of Florida’s accessibility statement.
Types of Disabilities That Impact Web Usage
Over half a million Americans report having some kind of disability that impacts their ability to use the web. (Americans living with disability and their technology profile by Susannah Fox Jan 21, 2011; Pew Internet and American Life Project; Pew Research Center )
The major disabilities that impact web usage include:
- Visual: blindness, low vision, color-blindness, reduced contrast sensitivity
- Hearing: deafness
- Motor and physical ability: inability to use a mouse, slow response time, reduced dexterity or limited fine motor coordination
- Cognitive: reduced short-term memory, difficulty concentrating, being easily distracted, an inability to focus on a large amount of information
Age-related impairments can affect how older persons use the web. In making your website, applications, and tools accessible it also ensures that your UF Health site is an enjoyable experience for older users.
UF&Shands Web Templates: Accessible Design Considerations
Accessible design is about trying to think and act as a disabled user in the interest of ensuring that your site meets their needs. It’s a way of considering web use as opposed to compliance with a checklist. There is often more than one right approach to resolving an accessibility issue. The principles we applied to the UF Health site incorporate forward thinking design in terms of web accessibility. We incorporate and utilize best practices in template design and provide consulting expertise so that you can make an informed decision about the best techniques to employ to ensure you build the most accessible site for your organization. (Americans living with disability and their technology profile by Susannah Fox Jan 21, 2011; Pew Internet and American Life Project; Pew Research Center)