It is estimated that about 100,000 people need a wheelchair in Kenya annually. Across the 47 counties in Kenya, anecdotal evidence showed that health centres and access points for rehabilitative services are not evenly distributed, appropriately staffed, and sufficiently equipped. The situational analysis showed that Kenya’s access challenges are driven by a policy gap, limited service points with few trained personnel, fragmented delivery landscape, no national specifications, standards or supply chain and limited financing of rehabilitative services and wheelchairs.
Purpose: This study aimed at understanding the perceptions of people with physical disabilities regarding playing Light Volleyball (LVB), identifying the possible constraints and risks they might face while playing, and providing their suggestions for fine-tuning the Light Volleyball intervention programmes.
Method: Four focus group interviews were conducted with 17 participants who joined the Light Volleyball trial programme. The participants were 11 males and 6 females, with an average age of 53.5 years (SD=11.83 years). People with poliomyelitis (n = 15), spinal cord injury (n = 1), hearing impairment (n = 1) were included.
Results: Participants indicated improved reactivity and coordination, cooperation in team, happiness, and novelty in general as positive outcomes while playing Light Volleyball. They preferred to play in the seated position (i.e., sitting light volleyball - SLVB), and with simpler rules. They believed that their ability to play Light Volleyball was subject to their body constraints.
Conclusion: Sitting Light Volleyball can be one of the new physical activity options for future sport promotion among people with physical disabilities in the community. The effectiveness of playing Sitting Light Volleyball in enhancing health among people with physical disabilities needs to be studied in future.
Purpose: The study aimed to identify the effects of the CBR programme on parents of children with Cerebral Palsy, living in Karnataka State, India. It also tried to find the challenges and improvements needed to make the CBR programme more effective.
Method: A cross-sectional, descriptive study design was used to collect a sample of 100 parents of children with Cerebral Palsy, with GMFCS levels IV and V. The sample was drawn from various communities in Bangalore, Davanagere and Bijapur, where the services of The Association of People with Disability are available. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with the study subjects. Data was analysed by SPSS using descriptive and inferential statistics.
Results: It was observed that the CBR programme had a positive effect on parents’ health, knowledge, social lives and empowerment. A binary logistic regression was done to find the relationship between health, knowledge, social lives and assistive devices use. A strong association was found between all the areas (p=.001) except GMFCS and assistive devices use (p=.004) at 95% CI. The odds ratios between them were greater than 1 and showed the strong positive effect of the CBR programme on parents.
Conclusion: The CBR programme not only has a positive effect on children with Cerebral Palsy, but also plays an important role in parents’ lives. It contributes in a positive way to parents’ overall activity.
An interview is reported with Lucas Paes de Melo, the CEO of Amparo, to discuss the journey so far of prosthetics company, Amparo. Rather than focus on the product, this insights paper provides an honest reflection of the journey to establishing an assistive technology company and delves into transferable insights. In doing so, they aim to provide insights to help current and future AT entrepreneurs to see behind the curtain of working in this space.
Appropriate wheelchair provision is necessary for addressing participation barriers experienced by individuals with mobility impairments. Health care professionals involved in the wheelchair service provision process require a specific set of skills and knowledge to enable wheelchair use that meets individual posture, mobility and daily living requirements. However, inconsistencies exist in academic programmes globally about providing comprehensive education and training programmes. The planned scoping review aims to review and synthesize the global literature on wheelchair service provision education for healthcare professional students, healthcare personnel and educators offered by universities, organizations and industries.
This scoping review will be guided by the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) methodological framework. Comprehensive literature searches will be conducted on various global electronic databases on health to seek out how wheelchair service provision education is organized, integrated, implemented and evaluated. Two independent reviewers will perform eligibility decisions and key data extractions. Data from selected studies will be extracted and analysed using conventional content analysis. Information related to wheelchair service provision education including curriculum development, content, teaching methods, evaluation and models of integration will be synthesized.
Implications and dissemination
The planned scoping review will be the first to examine all aspects of wheelchair service provision education across professionals, settings and countries. We anticipate that results will inform the content of a Wheelchair Educators’ Package, and if appropriate, a follow-up systematic review. An article reporting the results of the scoping review will be submitted for publication to a scientific journal.
This document gives employers practical tips for interviewing candidates with disabilities.
Background and aim:
This study investigated the current state of wheelchair services in Bangalore Rural district, as provided by Bangalore Baptist Hospital, and identified areas for improvement.
a cross-sectional survey was held among 50 wheelchair users. Data was collected on demographics, satisfaction, wheelchair skills and level of disability using QUEST, WST-Q and CHART-SF questionnaires.
Overall satisfaction can be described as more or less satisfied, scoring 3.8 out of 5. Wheelchair users were less satisfied with the services compared to the wheelchair itself. The skills a wheelchair users had were strongly correlated with satisfaction scores (p < 0.01). Differences in satisfaction between genders were observed and related to multiple factors.
Wheelchairs should be easy to use with support services being easily accessible. A wheelchair should be delivered together with a training program to provide the user with the skills to operate and maintain the wheelchair. There are gender-wise differences in satisfaction towards wheelchair services that influence satisfaction.
Purpose: To examine any associations between postural asymmetries, postural ability, and pain for chil- dren with cerebral palsy in sitting and supine positions.
Methods: A cross-sectional study of 2,735 children with cerebral palsy, 0-18years old, reported into the Swedish CPUP registry. Postural asymmetries, postural ability, the gross motor function classification sys- tem levels I–V, sex, age and report of pain were used to determine any relationship between these variables.
Results: Over half the children had postural asymmetries in sitting (n1⁄41,646; 60.2%) or supine (n1⁄41,467; 53.6%). These increased with age and as motor function decreased. Children were twice as likely to have pain if they had an asymmetric posture (OR 2.1–2.7), regardless of age, sex and motor func- tion. Children unable to maintain or change position independently were at higher risk for postural asym- metries in both supine (OR 2.6–7.8) and sitting positions (OR 1.5–4.2).
Conclusions: An association was found between having an asymmetric posture and ability to change position in sitting and/or lying; and with pain. The results indicate the need to assess posture and provide interventions to address asymmetric posture and pain.
To estimate population need and coverage for distance glasses, hearing aids and wheelchairs in India and Cameroon, and to explore the relationship between assistive product (AP) need measured through self‐report and clinical impairment assessment.
Population‐based surveys of approximately 4000 people each were conducted in Mahabubnagar district, India and Fundong district, Cameroon. Participants underwent standardised vision, hearing and musculoskeletal impairment assessment to assess need for distance glasses, hearing aids, wheelchairs. Participants with moderate or worse impairment and/or self‐reported difficulties in functioning were also asked about their self‐reported AP need.
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the lives of persons with disabilities is highlighted and the setbacks its socio-economic consequences could have on their independence, employability, and inclusion — especially in countries that are already dealing with armed conflict and violence are elucidated. The career development programme introduced by ICRC is briefly mentioned.
Neuromuscular disorders are characterised by muscle weakness that limits upper extremity mobility, but can be alleviated with dynamic arm support devices. Current research highlights the importance and difficulties of evidence-based recommendations for device development. We aim to provide research recommendations primarily concerning upper extremity body functions, and secondarily activity and participation, environmental and personal factors.
Evidence was synthesised from literature, ongoing studies, and expert opinions and tabulated within a framework based on a combination of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) model and contextual constructs.
Current literature mostly investigated the motor capacity of muscle function, joint mobility, and upper body functionality, and a few studies also addressed the impact on activity and participation. In addition, experts considered knowledge on device utilisation in the daily environment and characterising the beneficiaries better as important. Knowledge gaps showed that ICF model components and contextual constructs should be better integrated and more actively included in future research.
It is recommended to, first, integrate multiple ICF model components and contextual constructs within one study design. Second, include the influence of environmental and personal factors when developing and deploying a device. Third, include short-term and long-term measurements to monitor adaptations over time. Finally, include user satisfaction as guidance to evaluate the device effectiveness.
The purpose of this study was to clarify whether the novel lateral transfer assist robot facilitates easier transfers compared with a wheelchair in post-stroke hemiparesis patients.
This cross-sectional study enrolled 20 post-stroke hemiparesis patients, and the task difficulty of transfers was compared between a wheelchair and lateral transfer assist robot. All participants were asked to transfer from either wheelchair or lateral transfer assist robot to a platform table and back. The primary outcome was the transfer score of the Functional Independence Measure. The secondary outcome was the time required for transfer.
The transfer score of the Functional Independence Measure was significantly higher with lateral transfer assist robot than with wheelchair (p < .001). The transfer times from these devices to a platform table and back showed no significant differences (to device from platform table: 7.8 s, lateral transfer assist robot vs 7.6 s, wheelchair, p > .05: device to platform table: 7.1 s, lateral transfer assist robot vs 8.0 s, wheelchair, p > .05).
Transfer with a lateral transfer assist robot is easier than with wheelchair and facilitates independence in post-stroke hemiparesis patients.
Background: In spite of legislations and policies to ensure an inclusive society in South Africa for the accommodation of people with disabilities, there are reports that they still struggle to move freely within society.
Objectives: As part of a larger qualitative exploratory study on the preparation of undergraduate civil engineering students in a local university to contribute to the development of an inclusive society, this article seeks to understand the impact of the lived experiences of people with disabilities in their interaction with the built environment.
Method: Four persons with disabilities, considered to be knowledgeable about South African legislations relating to disability, were purposely selected to each share one specific experience whilst interacting with the built environment. The transcribed texts of the interviews were analysed by using the phenomenological–hermeneutic method.
Results: The participants exhibited strong desires to participate in society. However, the sense of loss of control and independence as they encountered challenges in the built environment changed the euphoria to disempowerment, rejection, anger and despondency. In spite of their experiences, participants expressed a commitment towards overcoming the challenges encountered in the broader interest of people with disabilities.
Conclusion: A deeper understanding of the impact of the experiences of people with disabilities when they participate within the built environment in South Africa revealed a broad spectrum of negative emotions, which may impact the quality of life and well-being of the participants.
African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020
To explore spouses’ experiences of the value of mobility scooters prescribed to their partner.
Material and Methods
A descriptive design with a qualitative approach was used. Thirteen spouses (11 females) aged 65–86 years participated. Semi-structured interviews were conducted when the spouse’s partner had had the mobility scooter for 4–6 months. The interviews were analysed using qualitative content analysis.
The interviews showed primarily that the spouses experienced that their everyday lives and life situation had improved since their partner had received a mobility scooter. They reported that they could engage in activities of their own choice to a greater extent. The prescription of a mobility scooter to their partner had also yielded a sense of freedom related to shared activities. On the other hand, the spouses described some of the scooter’s limitations. Three categories emerged: a sense of freedom related to the spouse’s own activities, a sense of freedom related to shared activities and a somewhat restricted freedom.
Prescription of a powered mobility scooter was of value to the users’ spouses because it facilitated independent and shared activities and participation in the community. The value was mainly expressed as a sense of freedom when doing things on their own or together with their partner. Spouses are key persons in the rehabilitation of people with mobility restrictions. Their views on the assistive device may influence the rehabilitation process. Knowledge of spouses’ experiences is thus crucial, as this may influence the future rehabilitation outcome.
Purpose: Although measuring outcome of rehabilitation in children with Developmental Coordination Disorder is considered important no consensus exists on which instruments to use. An important attribute of a measurement instrument would be that it is sensitive to clinical changes. The aim of this prospective, observational study was therefore to investigate the responsiveness of six potentially suitable instruments.
Methods: Forty-one children (34 boys, median age 7.8 years, Inter Quartile Range: 7.2–9.2) receiving multidisciplinary rehabilitation treatment for Developmental Coordination Disorder were included (mean treatment time: 32.8 h, Standard Deviation 7.3). The following instruments were applied before and after rehabilitation: Movement-Assessment-Battery-Children-2 (MABC-2), Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM), Systematic detection writing problems (SOS-2-NL), DCD-daily, Behaviour Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), and TNO-AZL children’s Quality of Life questionnaire (TACQOL)). Change-scores (paired t-test/Wilcoxon-test) and responsiveness (Effect-sizes and Standardized-Response-Means) were calculated.
Results: Significant differences over time were found for the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure, DCDdaily and Movement-Asessment-Battery-Children-2 (p < 0.05). The responsiveness of these instruments was moderate-high (Canadian Occupational Performance Measure-performance Effect-Size:1.70/Standardized-Response-Mean:1.81, Canadian Occupational Performance Measure-satisfaction Effect-Size:1.65/Standardized-Response-Mean 1.53; DCDdaily-total-score Effect-Size:0.40/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.62, DCDdaily-Quality-score Effect-Size:0.74/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.89, DCDdaily-time-score Effect-Size:0.21/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.43; MABC-2-total-score Effect-Size:0.42/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.43, MABC-2-Ball-skills-score Effect-Size:0.33/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.36). Systematic detection of writing problems (SOS-2-NL), Behaviour Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) and TNO-AZL children’s Quality of Life questionnaire (TACQOL) were not responsive to change.
Conclusion: Although the Movement-Assessment-Battery-Children-2 test is the most widely used instrument when measuring rehabilitation outcome in Developmental Coordination Disorder, the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure and DCDdaily seem to be more responsive and constitute a valuable addition.
The aim of this study was to assess the association between anxiety and depression with physical and sensory functional difficulties, among adults living in five low and middle-income countries (LMICs).
A secondary data analysis was undertaken using population-based disability survey data from five LMICs, including two national surveys (Guatemala, Maldives) and 3 regional/district surveys (Nepal, India, Cameroon). 19,337 participants were sampled in total (range 1,617–7,604 in individual studies). Anxiety, depression, and physical and sensory functional difficulties were assessed using the Washington Group Extended Question Set on Functioning. Age-sex adjusted logistic regression analyses were undertaken to assess the association of anxiety and depression with hearing, visual or mobility functional difficulties.
The findings demonstrated an increased adjusted odds of severe depression and severe anxiety among adults with mobility, hearing and visual functional difficulties in all settings (with ORs ranging from 2.0 to 14.2) except for in relation to hearing loss in India, the Maldives and Cameroon, where no clear association was found. For all settings and types of functional difficulties, there was a stronger association with severe anxiety and depression than with moderate. Both India and Cameroon had higher reported prevalences of physical and sensory functional difficulties compared with Nepal and Guatemala, and weaker associations with anxiety and depression
Purpose: Sleep problems are common in children with cerebral palsy (CP) and have a large impact on child health and family functioning. This qualitative study aimed to explore parental perspectives regarding the care for sleep of their young child (age 1–8 years) with CP.
Materials and methods: Individual, semi-structured interviews were conducted with eighteen parents of a child with CP (GMFCS levels I-V). Inductive thematic analysis of the data was performed within each of the three preidentified domains: 1) Current situation; 2) Concerns; 3) Needs.
Results: In total, sixteen themes were identified across the three domains. Within the families’ Current situation, parents expressed various issues concerning the care for sleep of their child both at night and during daytime, which are hampered by perceived deficiencies in healthcare, such as limited attention for sleep and lack of knowledge among health professionals. Themes within the Concerns and Needs domains encompassed experiences in the home environment relating to child, family and social aspects, while experiences in the healthcare setting included clinical practices and attitudes of healthcare professionals, as well as the broader organisation of care for sleep.
Conclusions: Parents face numerous challenges caring for their child’s sleep and the burden placed on families by sleep problems is underappreciated. In order to break the vicious circle of sleep problems and their disastrous consequences on the wellbeing of families, we need to wake up to parent-identified issues and shortcomings in healthcare. Care for sleep should be integrated into paediatric rehabilitation through routine inquiries, using a family-centered and multidisciplinary approach.
The aim of this study was to investigate access for Malawian prosthetic and orthotic users with lower limb disabilities to basic human rights such as health and a standard of living adequate for health, education, work, marrying and establishing a family, and voting. A further aim was to investigate differences among subgroups based on gender, level of income, and residential location.
A cross-sectional design and a questionnaire were used to collect data from 83 participants.
Disability and Rehabilitation
Purpose: Children and adolescents with cerebral palsy often have impaired hand function. This makes it difficult for them to deal with everyday activities. The aim of the study was to explore the experiences of children and adolescents with unilateral spastic cerebral palsy when it comes to learning and dealing with activities requiring bimanual use.
Method: Ten participants, attending mainstream schools, with unilateral spastic cerebral palsy (10–18 years, MACS-level I-III) took part in semi-structured interviews. Qualitative analysis with verbatim transcripts were analysed using a Grounded Theory approach.
Results: The learning of bimanual activities was described as a process taking place in interaction with the dynamics of everyday situations. Five categories describing the participants experiences emerged: “Reaching a point where you want to learn”, “Awareness and acceptance of your own abilities”, “Dealing with the boundaries of the disability”, “Dealing with the impact of people around you” and “Strategies for learning”. A multi-dimensional theory was derived, summarising how the participants learned bimanual activities in daily life.
Conclusions: Children and adolescents with unilateral spastic cerebral palsy express that the process of learning bimanual activities can only take place when it fits in with life as it unfolds. Thus, they have to adapt to a changing context and their own developing skills.
Purpose: To investigate access to basic human rights such as health, a standard of living adequate for health, education, work, marrying and establishing a family, and voting for prosthetic and orthotic users with lower limb disabilities in Malawi.
Materials and methods: A cross-sectional design and a questionnaire were used to collect data from 83 participants.
Results: Most participants reported their overall physical and mental health as good (60 [72%] and 50 [60%], respectively) and said they could access medical care (69 [83%]). Fifty (60%) participants had access to food, 72 (87%) had access to basic water, and 55 (66%) lived in housing adequate for their health. Most participants had studied in school (74 [89%]) but only 27 (33%) of the participants were working. Forty-three (52%) were married and 53 (64%) had children. Seventy-six (92%) participants could vote if they wished.
Conclusions: Rurality and high costs of transport and medication increase the barriers to accessing several basic human rights for people with lower limb physical disabilities. Interventions to target these barriers and increase access to secondary school, employment, and income could improve health equity for people with physical disabilities in Malawi and similar contexts.
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