648 Bay St., Sault Ste. Marie, ON P6A 1X8
Appointments

AODA: Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities

AODA: Accessibilty for Customer Service Policy

Intent

This policy is intended to meet the requirements of Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and applicable regulations made thereunder. It applies to the provision of goods and services to the public or other third parties, not to the goods themselves.

All goods and services provided by Floreani Dentistry Professional Corporation and the dental practices of Dr. Kent Floreani and Dr. Michael O’Toole (collectively referred to as the “Practice”) shall follow the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity.

Definitions

Assistive Device– Is a technical aid, communication device or other instrument that is used to maintain or improve the functional abilities of people with disabilities. Personal assistive devices are typically devices that patients bring with them such as a wheelchair, walker or a personal oxygen tank that might assist in hearing, seeing, communicating, moving, breathing, remembering and/or reading.

Disability – The term disability as defined by the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, and the Ontario Human Rights Code, refers to:

  • Any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement that is caused by bodily injury, birth defect or illness and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, a brain injury, any degree of paralysis, amputation, lack of physical co-ordination, blindness or visual impediment, deafness or hearing impediment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide dog or other animal or on a wheelchair or other remedial appliance or device;
  • A condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability;
  • A learning disability, or dysfunction in one or more of the processes involved in understanding or using symbols or spoken language;
  • A mental disorder; or
  • An injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997.

Guide Dog – Is a highly-trained working dog that has been trained at one of the facilities listed in Ontario Regulation 58 under the Blind Persons’ Rights Act, to provide mobility, safety and increased independence for people who are blind.
Service Animal – as reflected in Ontario Regulation 429/07, an animal is a service animal for a person with a disability if:

  • It is readily apparent that the animal is used by the person for reasons relating to his or her disability; or
  • If the person provides a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to the disability.

Service Dog – As reflected in Health Protection and Promotion Act, Ontario Regulation 562 a dog other than a guide dog for the blind is a service dog if:

  • It is readily apparent to an average person that the dog functions as a service dog for a person with a medical disability; or
  • The person who requires the dog can provide on request a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires a service dog.

Support Person – As reflected in Ontario Regulation 429/07, a support person means, in relation to a person with a disability, another person who accompanies him or her in order to help with communication, mobility, personal care, medical needs or access to goods and services.

Guidelines

In accordance with the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Ontario Regulation 429/07, this policy addresses the following:

A. The Provision of Goods and Services to Persons with Disabilities;
B. The Use of Assistive Devices
C. The Use of Guide Dogs, Service Animals and Service Dogs
D. The Use of Support Persons
E. Notice of Service Disruptions
F. Feedback
G. Training
H. Notice of Availability and Format of Required Documents

A. The Provision of Goods and Services to Persons with Disabilities

The Practice will make every reasonable effort to ensure that its policies, practices and procedures are consistent with the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity by:

  • Ensuring that all patients receive the same value and quality;
  • Allowing patients with disabilities to do things in their own ways, at their own pace when accessing goods and services as long as this does not present a safety risk;
  • Using alternative methods when possible to ensure that patients with disabilities have access to the same services, in the same place and in a similar manner;
  • Taking into account individual needs when providing goods and services; and
  • Communicating in a manner that takes into account the patient’s disability.

B. The Use of Assistive Devices

Persons with disabilities may use their own assistive devices as required when accessing goods or services provided by the Practice.

In cases where the assistive device presents a safety concern or where accessibility might be an issue, other reasonable measures will be used to ensure the access of goods and services. For example, open flames and oxygen tanks cannot be near one another. Therefore, the accommodation of a patient with an oxygen tank may involve ensuring the patient is in a location that would be considered safe for both the patient and the Practice. Or, where elevators are not present and where an individual requires assistive devices for the purposes of mobility, service will be provided in a location that meets the needs of the patient.

C. Guide Dogs, Service Animals and Service Dogs

The Practice will ensure that a patient with a disability that is accompanied by guide dog, service animal or service dog will be allowed access to those of its premises that are open to the public unless otherwise excluded by law. If such an animal is excluded by law from the premises the Practice will ensure that other measures are available to patients with disabilities to obtain, use or benefit from the Practice’s goods or services (for example, securing the animal in a safe location and offering the guidance of an employee).

Recognizing a Guide Dog, Service Dog and/or Service Animal:

If it is not readily apparent that the animal is being used by the patient for reasons relating to his or her disability, the Practice may request verification from the patient.

Verification may include:

  • A letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons related to the disability;
  • A valid identification card signed by the Attorney General of Canada; or,
  • A certificate of training from a recognized guide dog or service animal training school.

Care and Control of the Animal:

The patient that is accompanied by a guide dog, service dog and/or service animal is responsible for maintaining care and control of the animal at all time.

Allergies

If a health and safety concern presents itself for example in the form of a severe allergy to the animal, Practice will make all reasonable efforts to meet the needs of all individuals.

D. The Use of Support Persons

If a patient with a disability is accompanied by a support person, the Practice will ensure that both persons are allowed to enter the premises together and that the patient is not prevented from having access to the support person.
There may be times where seating and availability prevent the patient and support person from sitting beside each other. In these situations the Practice will make every reasonable attempt to resolve the issue.
In situations where confidential information might be discussed, consent will be obtained from the patient, prior to any conversation where confidential information might be discussed.

E. Notice of Disruptions in Service

Service disruptions may occur due to reasons that may or may not be within the control or knowledge of the Practice. In the event of any temporary disruptions to facilities or services that patients with disabilities rely on to access or use the Practice’s goods or services, reasonable efforts will be made to provide advance notice. In some circumstances such as in the situation of unplanned temporary disruptions, advance notice may not be possible.

Notifications will include:

In the event that a notification needs to be posted the following information will be included unless it is not readily available or known:

  • Goods or services that are disrupted or unavailable;
  • Reason for the disruption;
  • Anticipated duration; and
  • A description of alternative services or options.
Notification Options

When disruptions occur the Practice will provide notice by:

  • posting notices in conspicuous places including at the point of disruption, at the main entrance and the nearest accessible entrance to the service disruption and/or on the Practice website;
  • contacting patients with appointments;
  • verbally notifying patients when they are making an appointment; or
  • by any other method that may be reasonable under the circumstances.

F. Feedback

Feedback on the way the Practice provides services to persons with disabilities in the following way(s):

  • in person;
  • by telephone;
  • in writing;
  • by email; or
  • by any other communication technology as required.

Anyone providing formal feedback will receive acknowledgement of their feedback, along with any resulting actions based on concerns or complaints that were submitted.

G. Training

Training will be provided to:

  • All employees and volunteers;
  • All persons who participate in developing the Practice’s policies;
  • All other persons who provide goods, services or facilities on behalf of the Practice.

Training Provisions

As reflected in Ontario Regulation 429/07 and 191/11, regardless of the format, training will cover the following:

  1. The requirements of the accessibility standards referred to in Ontario Regulation 191/11 and on the Human Rights Code as it pertains to persons with disabilities;
  2. How to interact and communicate with persons with various types of disability.
  3. How to interact with persons with disabilities who use an assistive device or require the assistance of a guide dog or other service animal or the assistance of a support person.
  4. How to use equipment or devices available on the Practice’s premises or otherwise provided by the Practice that may help with the provision of goods or services to a person with a disability.
  5. What to do if a person with a particular type of disability is having difficulty accessing the Practice’s goods or services.
    The training on the requirements of the accessibility standards and on the Human Rights Code set out above shall be appropriate to the duties of the employees, volunteers and other persons.

Training Schedule

Training will be provided to each person as soon as practicable after they are assigned to the applicable duties. Training will be provided on an ongoing basis in connection with changes to the policies, practices and procedures governing the provision of goods or services to persons with disabilities.

H. Notice of Availability and Format of Documents

The Practice shall notify patients that the documents related to the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service are available upon request and in a format that takes into account the patient’s disability. Notification will be given by posting the information in a conspicuous place owned and operated by the Practice, the Practice’s website and/or any other reasonable method.

Administration

This policy and its related procedures will be reviewed as required in the event of legislative changes, or changes to company procedures.