According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, a service animal is a dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability. The tasks performed by the dog must be directly related to the person’s disability. Title III of the ADA mandates that persons with disabilities accompanied by service animals be allowed access with their service animals into places of public accommodation, including restaurants, public transportation, schools, and health-care facilities. For more information from the ADA, see their FAQ about Service Animals.
As stated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “no evidence suggests that animals pose a more significant risk of transmitting infection than people; therefore, service dogs should not be excluded from such areas, unless an individual patient’s situation or a particular animal poses greater risk that cannot be mitigated through reasonable measures.” For further information, please see #3 in the CDC Guidelines for Environmental Infection Control in Health-Care Facilities.Adapted from the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.