BADD: A Thousand Words

You may have noticed that I’ve been on hiatus. School holidays kicked my arse, and I crashed after, and I’ve been in the crash ever since. Hopefully I’ll climb out soon and rustle up some silverware, but meanwhile, my Blogging Against Disablism Day post is just an image from a doctor’s office, taken by me a few days ago.

Yes, there’s a door at the other side of the building that’s more accessible. But no accessible parking at the front. The only way to get to the front door from the undersized non-accessible carparks at the back, which are on a slight slope, is to go uphill up a fairly narrow vehicle-only accessway. There is no accessible street parking nearby.

This picture is also a good metaphor for how I feel right now.

Categories: Life

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9 replies

  1. I’m lost for words looking at that picture. It not even just thoughtless; it’s a real rejection of the need to take even the smallest amount of notice of the needs of people with physical disabilities.
    I hope the crash is over soon.

  2. As I mentioned to Lauredhel when she first showed me this pic, my doc’s office is much better accessibility wise, but it’s still let down by a lip on the doorsill that varies from 2cm to 5cm due to the slope of the street outside – a young and fit wheelchair user could bump over it, but any less strong wheelie would need to be pushed.
    I’ve seen a fair few doc’s rooms with proper access, but it certainly doesn’t seem to be a priority in the inner city.

  3. Fortunately, I’ve seen accessibility to the Health Centre at my university improve drastically over the years that I’ve been there (I started as an undergrad in 1999, FTR). At first, it was in a tiny demountable cottage, out back of the university; it was difficult to get there at all without taking stairs (you could do it, but you’d have to take the long way around), and then there were also a couple of small steps up to a verandah that led to the offices themselves.
    Now, the offices are in a central location at the university (and, indeed, accessibility throughout the whole campus has been improved with recent upgrades), it is accessible without encountering any stairs, and all doors have sensors so they open automatically, and there are also buttons that can be pressed to open the doors if this doesn’t happen for any reason (and they are of a height that would be easily accessible to most people using wheelchairs and scooters — so long as they had the use of their arms).

  4. It looks really new too. How could a Doctor’s surgery get it so wrong? I wonder if the Dr will notice a drop off in elderly patients and patients with a disability?

  5. @ mindy – they are prob trying to “gently” discourage such customers..
    The hospital where I go with my oldest son for various doctor visits (allergy, respiratory, sleep) is so hideously inaccessible that it would take about 100 photos to describe how the steep hillside site is organised to make access by all but the the fittest able bodied with excellent navigation skills and perfect English, a simple matter. Due to constant building projects, every time we go there, the way to his doctor’s office is altered, and it requires all my years of hospital navigation plus a map from the front desk plus our ability to walk and take lifts and read maps and ask random hosp workers (who always say something different from the front desk staff) to find the right place.. sometimes the hosp sends us a map to go with our appointment confirmation, sometimes the map is way out of date by the time the appointment comes around.. much as I would like my 19 yo to be able to attend medical appointments by himself, i know he would never negotiate this hellhole alone. God help anyone using a wheelchair or with minimal English, or elderly or infirm or moving slowly due to pain… but only able bodied young speakers of English go to huge tertiary hospitals right??

  6. This is a major issue that I’ve experienced. It limits our choices about providers of health care and still prevents us from getting proper care.

  7. Total score. Why is it that medical places are among some of the most inaccessible? It’s not just examining chairs and tables, it’s also bathrooms (sigh — I was once in the admin part of a hospital where the only accessible bathroom was 2 floors down: only patients need accessibility, not employees!) and as you so beautifully illustrate…. the gaps between the car, the parking spot and the front door.

  8. 1. My GP: A total pain in the arse. (the building, I mean, not the 2 GPs themselves who are lovely.) A narrow walkway leading to two steps up to a narrow door, the whole building v. small and cramped. Elderly people struggle to get in, I don’t think a wheelchair could possibly get in.
    2. Flinders street station lifts: FAIL, FAIL, FAIL. One poky little lift per platform. I was using it yest. because I had a bike, and of course bikes? bulky and take up space. So once they become even more the default for us abled, what then? You need big, service-type lifts which will take 2 wheelchairs, a couple of bikes and three people going to the Vic market with trolleys. As it was, everyone had to wait in a queue like women at a pub lining up for the toilet, and that’s another story. Took a quarter of an hour just to get to the turnstiles.

  9. Okay, that sucks big time. I only laugh because in calling new doctors I ask if they are accessible, I have yet to go to one which has a space to wait in a wheelchair, and several have multiple stairs. One said no access and agreed to meet with me standing in the parking lot.
    Your statement that there is a door behind the door which is accessible sort of sums it all up doesn’t it – the whole aspect of society – good! Did in a couple sentences what took me too long to write. The door behind the door is the one for us, if we could get to it.

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