The idea for the UpScale was sparked while members of our executive team were working as accessibility consultants, focused on helping clients comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
It was through this work that we recognized a huge gap between the intent of the law and the reality in medical facilities. All too often, a wheelchair could make it through the door of the facility, but the user couldn’t make it onto the exam table or weight scale, a problem that persists to this very day. It’s been more than 25 years since the ADA was passed, yet fewer than 10% of medical facilities have accessible equipment!
This “disconnect” forces patients with mobility challenges to settle for less than complete care, which can impact health outcomes. A patient with disabilities might undergo a physical exam in a wheelchair (risking missed diagnosis), or might be awkwardly lifted and transferred onto a traditional exam table (facing a fall and/or injury to staff during positioning). Many patients with disabilities cannot be weighed because they are unable to stand on traditional weight scales (preventing accurate dosage of medication and limiting preventive care).
Our team spoke with stakeholders from across the spectrum – disability advocates, people with disabilities, nurses, physicians, compliance specialists, and others. We tapped into a groundswell of momentum underway toward improving access in healthcare, and saw that government enforcement and ADA-related lawsuits were increasing too.
Within a couple of years, our team coalesced around its first product – the UpScale – a height-adjustable medical exam table with a built-in weight scale and other accessibility features.
We rolled up our sleeves and got to work. We engineered, refined, and tested multiple prototypes of the UpScale in consultation with specialists and end users, taking ergonomics and the US Access Board’s developing accessibility standards for medical equipment into account. We are proud of our final product and thrilled with the feedback that we have gotten from both patients and medical staff.
Medical Accessibility, LLC is a mission-driven, women-owned company founded by accessibility experts. We welcome you as a partner in raising the bar on healthcare delivery