Ensuring health facilities are accessible for all

Sightsavers’ accessibility standards and audit pack offers guidance to governments, healthcare providers and other organisations on how to improve healthcare facilities in low and middle income settings.

The contents of the accessibility audit pack spread on a table, including the accessibility standards, checklist, a tape measure, pen and USB stick.

The accessibility standards and audit pack can be used to help develop national accessibility standards, assess existing health infrastructure and guide the development of new health facilities.

The pack provides step-by-step guidance on how to plan, train a team and undertake an audit, then report on and implement improvements. It offers best-practice guidance to ensure a facility is accessible, alongside simple diagrams and photographic examples.

Several audit tools are included in the pack:

  • Accessibility standards: guidance based on international recommendations.
  • PowerPoint training presentation: explaining how to carry out an audit.
  • Audit checklist: a colour-coded list to be completed during the audit.
  • Costings template spreadsheet: to record and track progress.
  • Writing board: an accessible version of a clipboard, to help write on the go.
  • Bespoke audit tape measure: printed with key measurements to enable easy measuring of aspects such as door handles, steps, ramps, handrails and toilets.
  • USB stick: containing digital versions of all the audit resources.

The pack was initiated and developed by Andrea Pregel, Sightsavers’ programme advisor for social inclusion and disability, with contributions from Karen Smith, senior monitoring evaluation and learning advisor at Sightsavers. It was designed and produced by Sightsavers’ online and design team.

Request an audit pack

To download a digital version of the accessibility standards and audit pack, use the coloured bar below to fill in the form and submit your details to receive a download link.

For more information, or if you’d like to receive a physical version of the pack, email Andrea Pregel, [email protected].

Download a digital copy of the pack

Conducting an accessibility audit of a health facility

Accessibility audit in a health facility.

Train a team and plan the audit

Organise a training workshop to plan the audit with practical exercises, and ensure minimum disruption to the facilities’ services.

Man measuring height of a reception counter during an accessibility audit.

Carry out the accessibility audit

Ask managers to sign a consent form. Work through the checklist as you go around the facility, recording any improvements required.

People looking at a computer.

Draft a report and assign scores

After the audit, reflect on positive aspects and potential challenges as a team, draft a report and assign an accessibility score.

Monze Mission Hospital, Monze, Southern Province, Zambia.

Carry out improvements

Obtain cost estimates for each adjustment. Once all partners agree on priorities and funding, improvements can start.

Our approach to inclusive health

Sightsavers promotes inclusive health because we believe that everyone, wherever they live, should be able to receive quality, affordable health care.

We want to make sure that effective, affordable, accessible health services are available for everyone, particularly women, people with disabilities, and other marginalised groups.

Find out more about Sightsavers’ inclusive health work.

People with disabilities in Mozambique tell us their top tips for making health services accessible.

Download a digital accessibility audit pack