Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, a “qualified individual with a disability is one who, with or without reasonable modification to rules, policies, or practices, the removal of architectural, communication, or transportation barriers, or the provision of auxiliary aids and services, meets the essential eligibility requirements for the receipt of services or participation in programs or activities provided by a public entity”.
A person with a disability is anyone with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities such as walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, caring for self, performing manual tasks, working, or learning.
Chronic health impairments (such as, but not limited to, AIDS, arthritis, Crohn’s disease, cystic fibrosis, fibromyalgia, heart disease, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis and respiratory conditions) are considered disabilities under the ADA if a major life activity is substantially limited.
The following guidelines are provided to assist the service provider in collaborating with each student to determine appropriate accommodations. Documentation serves as a foundation that legitimizes a student’s request for appropriate accommodations.
Documentation by family members, immediate or otherwise, is not acceptable.
Recommended documentation from an appropriate physician includes:
- Diagnosis (clear statement of the medical diagnosis of the condition);
- Date of original diagnosis;
- Date of most recent evaluation, usually within a year. The age of acceptable documentation is dependent upon the disabling condition, current status, and the student’s request for accommodations;
- Diagnostic criteria / assessment procedures used to make the diagnosis;
- Description of present symptoms;
- Description of current impact of the condition (including impact of medication);
- Treatments/medications/devices or services currently prescribed;
- Expected duration, stability, or progression of the condition;
- Functional impact or limitations of the disability on learning or other major life activity;
- Medical information with signature of appropriate physician on letterhead stationery.
Further assessment by an appropriate professional may be required if co-existing learning disabilities, hearing or other disabling conditions exist. Documentation must be submitted to the Office of Disability Resources in person or by mail or fax (540/654-2155).
Some medical professionals prefer to provide the required disability documentation information by completing this form. Feel free to offer this report option to your treating professional.