Optimal Solutions Group to Create Platform to Review Sites for Accessibility Compliance

Date: October 11, 2018
Location: College Park, MD


Like buildings and homes, websites may have barriers to accessibility that are not obvious until you know what to look for. Site users who are blind need text descriptions of images that can be read by a screen reader device, while users who cannot easily grip objects will need forms with fields that are navigable without clicking a mouse.

Federal law requires government agencies to make their websites accessible to people with disabilities, but sprawling sites can have thousands of pages that were developed without accessibility in mind.

The Accessibility Assessor Platform, powered by ReveloTM software, is used to assess government agency, contractor, and grantee websites intended for the public to ensure that they meet the requirements of Sections 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Optimal Solutions Group has purchased a license from ReveloTM and is configuring the platform for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that will review Provider Education Websites for accessibility compliance.

The Accessibility Assessor Platform also generates customizable, reader-friendly performance report. The reports make it possible for government agencies to evaluate contractor and grantee websites, institute changes, and evaluate the sites for compliance and improvement over time.

Under the CMS contract, the Provider Education Websites will be scanned for compliance monthly; these sites are used by Medicare beneficiaries, providers, and contractors. Because of the important role and high volume of traffic these websites play in claims processing and appeals of claims decisions, it is critical that users encounter no barriers in accessing these websites.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act requires agencies to provide individuals with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in their programs and benefit from their services, including the provision of information to employees and members of the public. Section 508 requires Federal agencies to ensure that persons with disabilities have comparable access to and use of electronic information technology. Any electronic and information technology used, maintained, developed, or procured by HHS, including CMS services, must be accessible to persons with disabilities.