Invited To Dinner But Not To The Table: Web Content Accessibility Evaluation For Persons With Disabilities.

Session Type
Understanding and using evidence
Okwen M1, Yuh N1
1Effective Basic Services (eBASE), Cameroon

Background: Disability is very common and yet not well understood within Sub-Saharan Africa countries. There has been a growing attention to the use of research evidence to improve social inclusion of persons living with disabilities.
Objectives: The purpose of this paper is to report on a process that can be used to monitor and evaluate evidence databases to encourage improvements in website and content accessibility for People with disabilities.. To achieve this goal, we set out to examine five evidence communities’ online databases by (1) assessing the accessibility of these databases website through the web browser and (2) assessing the resources within these websites (database). Finally, we aimed to provide feedback from the evaluation to these evidence databases. Methodology: We carried out a cross sectional study of five online evidence databases using the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). WCAG is a universal standard for web content accessibility assessment. We assessed access to the databases using these guidelines, while using a purposive sample of 25 resources within them.
Results: The five websites of the databases scored an average of 78.6% [range: 73% – 87%] compliance with best practice following WCAG. Resources are meant to improve practice, policy and decision making for all including people with disabilities. They include systermatic reviews, reports, articles amongst others. Being able to access and consume them is another step towards achieving the aforementioned. Accessibility is being able to obtain, reach, understand and use resources in this context. Therefore addressing barriers that could hinder one from getting and using resources is of importance. A total of 25 resources from the five databases were tested for accessibility and they scored an average of 52.5% [range 12.5% – 70%]. Conclusion: Even though these evidence databases are considered as enabling inclusion and diversity within the evidence ecosystem their contents are not fully accessible to people with disability and only partially met the WCAG recommendations.
Patient, public and/or healthcare consumer involvement: This work was done by research evidence consumers living with disabilities.