Background: The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 is the most comprehensive federal law to address discrimination against an estimated 49 million Americans in the areas of employment, governmental services, public accommodations, transportation, and telecommunications. Methods: The authors describe title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act and examine the challenges of implementing the employment provisions set forth in this legislation as they relate to visual impairment and disability. Conclusions: It is crucial that ophthalmologists understand the implications of the Americans with Disabilities Act when caring for individuals with visual impairments and communicating with their employers and other healthcare specialists. Ophthalmologists play an increasingly important role in shaping public policy toward people with visual impairments.
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