Access Policy for Persons with Disabilities

Rite Aid is committed to providing services to all customers, including those with disabilities, as stated in Rite Aid’s Non-Discrimination Policy.

To effectuate Rite Aid’s Non-Discrimination Policy, the following protocols and procedures will be used to assure that Rite Aid meets its commitments to all customers who seek to use Rite Aid pharmacies and other services, including those who are deaf, hard of hearing, blind, or who have low vision, immunity related impairments, or other impairments or disabilities.  For the purpose of these protocols and procedures, customers shall also mean those individuals accompanying or assisting customers with disabilities, including their companions, such as legal guardians, family members, friends, those with medical power of attorney, and other advocates, who may also have such disabilities or impairments.

PROCEDURE

  1. Notice of the right to auxiliary aids and services for effective communication.

    Rite Aid provides notice of the availability of auxiliary aids and services for effective communication through posted notices, brochures, and Rite Aid’s website.

  2. Identification and Assessment of Need.

    When a customer has an impairment that affects the ability to communicate, or requests an auxiliary aid or service to communicate effectively with pharmacy employees, the Pharmacist will assess the customer’s communication needs to determine the auxiliary aids or services necessary to ensure effective communication. The Pharmacist’s assessment will take into consideration: the nature, length, and importance of the intended communication with the customer; the customer’s disability and communications skills and knowledge; and the customer’s statement of need for an auxiliary aid or service.

    Rite Aid will train pharmacy employees to be sensitive to the needs of customers with disabilities.

  3. Provision of Auxiliary Aids and Services

    The Pharmacy Manager, with assistance from the Pharmacy District Manager or Rite Aid’s Section 504/ Civil Rights Coordinator [Tracy L. Adams, Telephone # 717-214-8884, Email  Section504.CRC@RiteAid.com; Fax: 717-975-5711; Mailing Address: 30 Hunter Lane, Camp Hill, PA 17011] will ensure that auxiliary aids and services are provided as needed for effective communications with customers with disabilities. Auxiliary aids or services needed for effective communication will be provided free of charge and in a timely manner.

  4. For Customers Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

    First and foremost, Rite Aid will provide all written materials required by law with all prescriptions. For communications that are brief and simple, using a note pad to write pertinent information and responses to a customer’s questions may be appropriate, if effective. Rite Aid Pharmacists are qualified to transcribe communications impartially and competently. 

    Customers who are deaf or hard of hearing and communicate by telephone by using teletype, may contact any Rite Aid pharmacy, Rite Aid Customer Service number, or any other Rite Aid telephone number by calling 711 (the free nationwide telecommunications relay service).  After calling 711, the customer may communicate to the Communications Assistant answering the 711 call the Rite Aid telephone number he or she wishes to reach. The Communications Assistant will then facilitate the communications between the customer and the Rite Aid representative.

    If the Pharmacist determines that a sign language interpreter is needed to communicate effectively with the customer, a qualified interpreter will be provided through Video Remote Interpreting (VRI).  Where VRI is not yet available in a particular Rite Aid store, Rite Aid will either: (1) refer the customer to another closely located Rite Aid store that has VRI installed; or (2) enable the use of VRI in that store in a timely manner by providing the Pharmacy District Manager (or other field leader) with a portable device with “hot spot” internet service and sufficient programming, capacity, and services to support VRI. If the Pharmacist, with assistance from Rite Aid’s Section 504/ Civil Rights Coordinator, determines that no auxiliary aid other than on-site sign language interpreting will suffice to provide effective communications with a customer, an on-site interpreter will be provided when an on-site interpreter is available.

    Rite Aid staff will not require a customer to bring someone to interpret for him or her. A companion may be relied upon to interpret in only two situations:  
    (1) In an emergency involving an imminent threat to the safety or welfare of an individual or the public, an adult or minor child accompanying a customer who uses sign language may be relied upon to interpret or facilitate communication only when a qualified interpreter is not available.
    (2) In situations not involving an imminent threat, an adult accompanying a customer who uses sign language may be relied upon to interpret or facilitate communication when: a) the customer requests  assistance; b) the accompanying adult agrees; and c) reliance on the accompanying adult is appropriate under the circumstances.

    Rite Aid staff shall not rely on an accompanying adult to interpret when there is reason to doubt the person’s impartiality or effectiveness.  

    Note:  Children may not be used to interpret in order to assure confidentiality of information and accurate communication, except in an emergency, as stated above.

  5. For Customers Who are Blind or Have Low Vision

    Pharmacy staff will communicate information contained in written materials concerning prescriptions and related information, treatment, benefits, services, waiver of rights and consent to treatment forms in a manner that is effective for the customer. No single method is effective for everyone in every situation. Ways of making standard print information accessible to customers who are blind or have low vision include:

    • Reading written information to customers with vision impairments. Rite Aid Pharmacists are qualified to read communications impartially and competently.  To the extent the information concerns protected health information, in compliance with HIPAA, such reading will be done in a private area. Customers or their representatives will also be notified that the Pharmacist is available to answer any questions over the phone. 
    • Providing print documents in large print (18 point or larger).  For non-prescription label materials that are printed from a computer in the pharmacy, 18 point or larger fonts, where appropriate, will be used in printing the materials if larger print documents would assist a customer with vision impairments. By the Pharmacist’s referral to Rite Aid’s Specialty Pharmacy, Rite Aid may provide a large (18 point or larger) font prescription label.
    • Providing talking pill reminders or talking prescription labels.  All Rite Aid stores have the capability of offering a talking prescription reminder that allows for thirty (30) second recording capability for vital prescription information.  By the Pharmacist’s referral to Rite Aid’s Specialty Pharmacy, Rite Aid may provide additional prescription information via longer recording time on a talking prescription label. 
    • Providing Braille prescription labels containing patient name, prescription drug name, and instructions, by the Pharmacist’s referral to Rite Aid’s Specialty Pharmacy.
    • Individuals who fill and refill their prescriptions at Rite Aid may access their prescription information, including adverse events, side effects, and other important information, in an accessible electronic format that can be read by a customer with a computer which uses assistive technology (e.g., screen reader software or Braille display) or smart phone with voice activated technology by creating an account at Rite Aid’s website at https://www.riteaid.com/pharmacy/services/my-pharmacy/

  6. For Customers With Immunity-Related Impairments

    Rite Aid administers various immunizations, including flu shots, consistent with state regulations, and without discrimination on the basis of disability as required by law.  All Rite Aid Pharmacists receive immunization training.  The initial training is the American Pharmacist Association (APhA) Immunization course, developed by APhA in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  Rite Aid also provides annual training updates for their immunization program and annual updates to the Rite Aid’s Policies and Procedures and its Exposure Control Program.  Rite Aid Pharmacists are trained to use a screening questionnaire in order to properly identify patients who need immunizations and to identify contraindications to immunizations based on the guidance of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and the CDC.  Consistent with this guidance, Rite Aid will administer any recommended immunizations and other services to customers with immunity-related impairments allowed by state regulations.  If the guidance is not to offer an immunization to individuals with immunity-related impairments, the Pharmacist will advise of the reason for this and offer any available alternatives consistent with the Advisory Committee and CDC guidelines.

  7. Customer Assistive Devices

    Customers with disabilities are welcome to use their personal assistive devices to facilitate access to Rite Aid’s goods and services, provided that their personal assistive devices do not impair the safety, security, and privacy protections of the equipment and conditions in a particular Rite Aid pharmacy.

  8. Service Animals

    Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, service animal “means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.” In certain circumstances, miniature horses may be considered service animals for the purposes of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Any animal other than a dog is not a service animal under the Americans with Disabilities Act.  

    Under certain circumstances, other laws may define service animal differently.  If you have a question about whether an animal other than a dog or a miniature horse is a service animal, please consult with Rite Aid’s Section 504/ Civil Rights Coordinator for guidance.

    A customer with a disability may have a service animal.  Service animals must be allowed in all store areas where customers are normally allowed to go.

    Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, service animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service animal’s work or the customer’s disability prevents using these devices.  If the animal is not in a harness, tether, or leash, the customer must maintain control of the service animal through voice, signal or other effective controls.

    When it is not obvious what service an animal provides to a customer, Rite Aid staff may ask only these two questions:
    (1) Is the animal a service animal required because of a disability?
    (2) What work or task has the animal been trained to perform?

    Rite Aid staff shall never:
    (1) ask about a customer’s disability;
    (2) require medical documentation for the service animal;
    (3) require any type of identification card or proof of training for the service animal; or,
    (4) ask that the service animal demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task.

    Rite Aid staff shall not ask a customer with a disability to remove a service animal from a store unless:

    (1) the service animal is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it; or
    (2) the service animal is not housebroken. 

     

    If there is a legitimate reason to ask that a service animal be removed, Rite Aid staff will offer the customer with a disability the opportunity to obtain the Rite Aid goods or services without the animal’s presence.

    Rite Aid staff will not ask a customer with a disability to remove his/her service animal from the store without first speaking with his/ her supervisor, the District Manager or the Section 504/ Civil Rights Coordinator.

 

Updated September 22, 2016