Staying healthy and well is important to people with a visual impairment. Eating nutritious foods, getting adequate sleep and exercising are all parts of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. But if you have a medical condition requiring the use of accessible medical devices and pharmacies, your ability to stay healthy can be impacted.
Blood pressure monitors, bath scales, thermometers and diabetic supplies all need to be adapted to meet the needs of a person with vision loss. Accessible prescription medications must be available in a way that gives accuracy, control and privacy.
Additionally, with the continuation of the pandemic we now have the ability to test for COVID-19 from home. Accessing these testing kits is important for the visually impaired. To stay healthy and maintain a good quality of life, learn about the following accessible medical devices and pharmacies for the blind and visually impaired.
Talking bath scale
For those monitoring their weight or trying to stay fit a talking bath scale is best. This accessible scale is a great tool to keep track of weight loss goals. These scales are simple to use, operating like traditional scales. Just step on the scale and your weight will be verbally announced. Some models have a large print screen ideal for people with low vision.
Talking blood pressure monitor
Knowing your blood pressure numbers is critical when staying healthy, particularly for people dealing with medical conditions like diabetes. Unfortunately, traditional blood pressure monitors are not accessible because the screens are hard to read and have little contrast. Using a talking blood pressure monitor gives a visually impaired user access to this information.
When battling colds, fevers, flu and even COVID-19 knowing your body temperature is important. Using a talking thermometer will provide that access. They are easy to use, simply press the button and insert it in the mouth, ear or under the arm.
Accessible COVID-19 home testing
As we all know, taking your temperature is a big part of checking for COVID-19. But taking a test will better determine if you have the virus. Aira, a visual interpretation service, has partnered with the National Federation of the Blind to make Covid-19 at home testing accessible for blind and visual impaired people. Just call Aira and receive professional assistance with any type of Covid-19 rapid antigen or PCR home test.
Accessible diabetic supplies
Diabetes is the leading cause of vision loss in the United States for people under 70, largely due to diabetic retinopathy. One thing people with diabetes and vision loss can do to successfully control their disease is manage their medications. That includes using accessible monitoring and insulin measuring devices.
Accessible medications and pharmacies
People with a visual impairment are especially at risk for mismanagement of their prescriptions because of accessibility. Errors like taking the wrong pill, missing refill dates or taking expired medication are just a few. Typically, prescription information on the bottle and documents are in small print. In 2012 legislation was passed to make prescriptions more accessible. As a result, changes were made to the way medications are administered to people with vision loss.
Today, we have multiple options to access medications. Prescription information is provided in braille and large print. There are accessible prescription label options such as ScripTalk and CVS Spoken RX. The pharmacist programs your prescription information, including drug name, dosage, instructions, warnings, pharmacy information, doctor name, prescription number, date and more. To read the label, download and use the free mobile app to hear the information. If you don’t want to use a smartphone, Walgreens offers the Talking Pill Reminder. It is a device attached to your medication bottle that reads your prescription information, recorded by the pharmacist, and reminds you when to take your medication.
Another option is Accessible Pharmacy that assists with mail-order prescriptions. They offer accessible devices, large print and braille labels, and special packaging options. They also provide education and assistance via telephone or the Be My Eyes app. If you are diabetic, Accessible Pharmacy will provide Prodigy talking glucose meters and supplies along with continuous glucose monitors and supplies. You can call Accessible Pharmacy at 215-799-9900, visit their website or through the Be My Eyes app.
People with vision loss want to maintain and control their health and wellness. Though we are not medical professionals, Outlook Enrichment staff members can help you find accessible resources to keep you healthy. Contact us with any questions you have.