Published: 14 December 2020
New accessibility software has launched today, allowing users to customize website content in ways that work best for them.
In a major improvement to meet the needs of people with different communication needs, the Recite Me cloud-based assistive technology toolbar, which has launched across the website today, includes accessibility features such as:
For users with a visual impairment, the screen reader will help website visitors to perceive and understand our content by reading aloud website text, which can be customised to suit the viewer.
To simplify our information and support our users in understanding it, Recite Me provides five main reading tools; ruler, screen mask, magnifier, margins, and a dictionary.
Users are now able to change the way our website looks, by customising colour schemes as well as the texts font style, size, colour, and spacing.
The translation tool will quickly and easily translate our content into over 100 languages, including 35 text to speech voices.
Another key feature of the software is its ability to recognise a link as a pdf and open it in a document reader that provides accessibility features including text to speech, translations and the ability to adjust the background and foreground colour of the text.
Leah Morantz, Head of Communications, said:
“User experience has been at the heart of the project since we started the web redevelopment in 2018, we’ve always tried to keep the needs of the audience central to our content planning and layout design.
“It’s also really important that we keep developing the platform, pushing for innovation and change as we learn from insight.
“One of the things that we wanted to do much better than before was meet the needs of people with different sensory needs.
“We’re now able to do this. In fact, working with NWIS, we’re piloting a way forward for the other NHS Wales web sites. If the new developments meet audience needs, we’ll be able to roll them out to the other health boards and trusts across Wales.”
Rebecca Fogarty, Engagement & Collaboration Manager said:
“These developments come as a result of Public Health Wales’ commitment to engaging with people and communities and responding to the needs they identify to improve our services.
“We know the information available on our website needs to be available in different formats and languages to reach our diverse audiences, so we worked hard to find a solution that will make information we publish online more accessible to those with sight loss, people with some learning difficulties, such as dyslexia, speakers of English as an additional language and people with lower literacy levels.
“We will continue ‘to involve the people and communities we serve in service developments across Public Health Wales to drive quality improvements and promote equality of access.”