Law & Medicine

How the ADA shapes health care


Question: After many years of diabetes, a 60-year-old office worker develops nephropathy followed by end-stage renal disease, and now requires dialysis. He has opted for peritoneal dialysis rather than hemodialysis, so that he does not have to be away from the workplace for treatment. His diabetes is insulin requiring, and he has occasional hypoglycemic reactions. Although he qualifies for Social Security disability benefits, he prefers to continue working full time. The employer is considering terminating him.

Which of the following is best?

A. The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits job discrimination against patients with disabilities, so long as they are otherwise qualified for every aspect of the job.

B. Renal insufficiency and diabetes are considered disabilities under the ADA.

C. The employer is obligated to provide full accommodation to enable this employee to continue working.

D. If the accommodations needed for a disabled person are unreasonable, or prove too disruptive or expensive, then the employer is not obligated to provide them.

E. This patient should simply retire and enjoy his SS disability benefits.


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