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Coronavirus care centres in India not accessible for persons with disabilities

Hospitalized patient lying in bed and wheelchair in the foreground

The coronavirus care centres are not accessible for persons with disabilities, Opposition MLA Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco on Wednesday said that he has written to the Health and the Social Welfare Minister to make care centers accessible in Margao, Goa, India.

He said the present letter is also based on the messages he has received from persons with disabilities.

“A health centre being accessible to persons with disabilities does not mean it houses only facilities of ramp and lifts but many more including accessible toilets and bathrooms, etc” he said.

“For instance, Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Indoor Stadium, which is being currently used to treat COVID-19 asymptomatic patients, has ramps but is not accessible because of its steep gradient. Similarly, the toilets and bathrooms of tertiary GMC and Asilo Hospital in Mapusa are not accessible to persons with disabilities and senior citizens as per the Disability Act 1995,” he claimed.

“Likewise there are other persons with disabilities including the hearing impaired and visually challenged whose grievances vis-à-vis Goa’s public health infrastructure need to be addressed urgently because let us not forget government health centres have been found severely lagging for the past 25 years in the implementation of the provisions of Disability Act 1995,” he said.

“I appeal to the authorities and ministers to make public healthcare centres, including COVID-19 Care Centres accessible for persons with disabilities,” the MLA requested.

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