Effects Of Disability On Public Health

2724 Words11 Pages
As the fields of medicine, psychology and education have evolved, interest in the degree of impairment an individual may experience in a given situation, regardless of diagnosis, has grown. A recent Google search revealed thousands of relevant books and scientific articles addressing impairments caused secondary to physical, mental health and educational conditions. In part, interest in impairment has been spurred on by a shift towards the evaluation of disability. According to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA, 2004), “disability” refers to a physical or mental condition that limits a person’s movements or restricts the individual in one or more of the major life activities. Assessment of disability had an almost Cinderella effect on the appreciation of impairment in medical, educational and mental health conditions (Üstün & Kennedy, 2009). Prior to that, many diseases, disabilities and disorders had never been placed on public health priority lists. When the interest and the need for assessing disability entered into the equation, as is the case for example in determining eligibility for Special Education services ) beyond symptoms and test scores evaluators began to scramble to piece together valid and reliable methods to assess disability. Despite the fact that the concept of disability in mental and educational disorders has been well known, the frequency and outcome of these disabilities has never been well defined or carefully,
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