Press Release

Disclosures: Redfield reports no relevant financial disclosures.
July 24, 2020
3 min read

CDC recognizes 30th anniversary of Americans with Disabilities Act


Press Release

Disclosures: Redfield reports no relevant financial disclosures.
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This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, signed into law by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990.

The Americans with Disabilities (ADA) Act protects people with disabilities against discrimination in several areas, including employment, education, recreation, transportation and housing. The CDC recognizes the ADA as an opportunity to include people with disabilities in federal efforts regarding public health and health care, according to a press release.

United States Health Care
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, signed into law by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990. Source: Shutterstock.

“CDC is committed to protecting the health and well-being of people with disabilities in our public health efforts,” CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, MD, said in the release. “Addressing the current pandemic, CDC has heightened our efforts during the COVID-19 response to ensure that people with disabilities are represented in our guidance and have access to important public health information. We continue to work closely with our partners to deliver essential information to individuals with disabilities and their families and are creating a variety of web resources in accessible formats, including American Sign Language.”

Despite increasing access to public health programs, including interventions and accessible formats tailored to people with disabilities, this population continues to face substantial health disparities, the release said. For example, adults with disabilities are three times more likely than those without disabilities to develop heart disease, stroke, diabetes or cancer.

Photo of Robert Redfield
Robert R. Redfield

“The struggles for access to health care and inclusion that people with disabilities face must be addressed — public health is for everyone,” Redfield said. “We encourage all Americans to join us in strengthening and building a healthier and more inclusive Nation.”

In honor of the 30th anniversary of the signing of the ADA, Healio Primary Care has compiled a list of stories about the unique health needs of people with disabilities, disparities in health care in this population and efforts to address them:

AAP: Children with disabilities should not be excluded from transplant pool

Children with intellectual and developmental disabilities should not be excluded from receiving solid organ transplants, the AAP said in a new policy statement. Read more.

Visually impaired convey concerns in COVID-19 era

A survey presented at the virtual Prevent Blindness: Focus on Eye Health National Summit found trepidation among visually impaired persons amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more.

Cerebral palsy tied to increased risk for mental health disorders


Adults with cerebral palsy, particularly those with neurodevelopmental disorders, have increased risk for mental health disorders compared with adults without cerebral palsy, according to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. Read more.

Colorectal cancer screening lower in adults with disabilities

Adults with certain disabilities are less likely to undergo recommended colorectal cancer screening compared with individuals without disabilities, according to the results of a 10-year study. Read more.

Q&A: Autism guidelines include messages for clinicians about screening

The AAP published updated clinical guidelines for autism spectrum disorder that offer clinicians insight into new strategies for identification and early intervention of the disorder. Read more.

Telephone-based CBT significantly improves depression outcomes for patients with Parkinson's disease

Telephone-based cognitive behavioral therapy reduced depressive symptoms among patients with Parkinson’s disease, according to results of a randomized controlled trial published in Neurology. Read more.

Hospitalized patients with vision loss face worse outcomes for common illnesses

A study published in JAMA Ophthalmology found that hospitalized patients who are not identified with vision loss may not be receiving the special attention they need. Read more.

Substance use disorders more prevalent in adults under 50 with hearing loss

Hearing loss among individuals aged younger than 50 years seemed to increase the risk for substance use disorders, particularly opioid use disorder, according to study findings. Read more.

Odds of asthma significantly higher among children with disability or delay

Asthma prevalence estimates were 10 percentage points higher among children with a developmental disability or delay than among children without one, according to a study in JAMA Network Open. Read more.

Global cases of hip, knee osteoarthritis exceed 300 million

There were more than 300 million cases of hip and knee osteoarthritis reported worldwide in 2017, with figures expected to rise even further in the future, particularly among women, according to data published in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. Read more.