Digital Accessibility: A Must in Healthcare and Life Sciences

Healthcare and life sciences organizations intent on elevating the patient and member experience put a premium on accessibility when designing and developing digital content and functionality. Forward-thinking organizations ensure digital resources are accessible to people with disabilities, meeting the patient and member where they are. For today’s patients and members, “where they are” is increasingly online, mobile, and outside of traditional care settings.

Who is the audience for digitally accessible content?

It is broad and diverse. A partial list includes patients and their caregivers, physicians, medical researchers, clinicians, career seekers, third party vendors, medical students, and educators. Some of these online healthcare consumers are part of the nearly 57 million people in the US with a disability. And that total doesn’t include consumers temporarily disabled due to a short-term illness or injury, or those who may encounter situational barriers to healthcare information and services due to jargon and confusing terminology.

Don’t miss the benefits of accessible digital health

To fully understand the benefits a comprehensive accessibility strategy could bring to your healthcare and life sciences organization’s digital experience, take a look at the economic impact that occurs when digital resources are unable to meet the basic needs of their entire user base. The costs of an inaccessible digital experience can quickly mount up for payers and providers that are not adapting to the need for accessible digital health.
For starters, according to a study in the UK, 71% of web users with access needs will leave a website if it’s difficult to use. And, Fifth Quadrant Analytics reports that the disability market represents an annual disposable income of $1.2 trillion, with $544 billion in the US alone. Therefore, healthcare and life sciences organizations lose big when they don’t provide a smooth experience for these consumers.
And don’t overlook the 2.3 billion potential consumers who act on their emotional connection to those with disabilities, those include caregivers, family members, and friends. Together, they control more than $8 trillion in annual disposable income, and healthcare spending is an essential and important component. Think of that impact in the context of enrollment periods, finding a doctor and appointment setting, medication reminders, and other key touchpoints in the healthcare journey.
To learn more about how to improve digital accessibility in your healthcare or life sciences organization, download our guide, Enhance the Digital Health Experience with Digital Accessibility.

About the Author

I'm a Senior User Researcher out of the Atlanta office.

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