Doug Wells, a second-year medical student at Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine, founds advocacy group for people with disabilities

Doug Wells, a Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine second-year medical student, has founded the Community Healthcare Advocacy Team for Individuals with Disabilities (CHATID).

Imagine approaching a receptionist's desk that's so high you can't see over it. Or arriving for a cancer screening only to confuse staff because they are not sure how to properly lift you from your wheelchair. Or being deaf and having interpretive services that don't speak the sign language to which you are accustomed, rendering the service virtually useless. These are challenges people with disabilities face in our community every day. They comprise the largest minority group that anyone can join at any time, yet far too few of their neighbors comprehend the difficulties they encounter.

Doug said these barriers unacceptable -- especially when they are encountered in healthcare. Because his father copes with multiple sclerosis (MS), Doug has firsthand knowledge of some of the difficulties people with disabilities face. That's why he founded CHATID.

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