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Disability Prevalence among Adults: Estimates for 54 Countries and Progress towards a Global Estimate

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Author Info

  • Sophie Mitra

    (Fordham University)

  • Usha Sambamoorthi

    (West Virginia University)

Abstract

Objectives: We estimated disability prevalence among adults at global, regional and country levels using internationally comparable disability data and measure. Methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis of data from the World Health Survey (WHS) (2002--2004) for nationally representative samples of civilian, non-institutionalized populations in 54 countries. A disability was measured as having at least one severe or extreme difficulty with bodily functions (seeing, concentrating) and activities (moving around, self--care) based on an individual's self-reports. Results: In the 54 countries under study, severe or extreme functional or activity difficulties are highly prevalent. For all countries, disability prevalence is estimated at 14% for all adults. Low and middle income countries have higher disability prevalence compared to high income countries. Among subgroups, disability prevalence stands at 12% amon working age adults and 39% among the elderly. Women have higher prevalence than men. Conclusions: Disability is found to be highly prevalent among adults, with an estimated global prevalence at 14%. Disability deserves enhanced policy attention and resources in public health and international development.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Fordham University, Department of Economics in its series Fordham Economics Discussion Paper Series with number dp2013-06.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:frd:wpaper:dp2013-06

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Web page: http://www.fordham.edu/economics/
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Keywords: Disability prevalence; Development;

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Cited by:
  1. Suguru Mizunoya & Sophie Mitra, 2012. "Is there a Disability Gap in Employment Rates in Developing Countries?," Fordham Economics Discussion Paper Series dp2012_03, Fordham University, Department of Economics.

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