Disabilities and Quality of Life

A special issue of Disabilities (ISSN 2673-7272).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 December 2021) | Viewed by 13178

Special Issue Editor

School of Health Sciences, Bangor University, Bangor LL57 2DG, UK
Interests: health economics; disability; assistive technology; public health; quality of life; patient-reported outcome measures; quality-adjusted life years; preventative health

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Quality of life can be affected by many different aspects of our lives. Of particular importance in health research is the concept of health-related quality of life, which is a subjective and multi-dimensional construct defined as the perceived impact of health status on quality of life, including physical, psychological, and social functioning.

The relationship between health, disability and quality of life is complex. Research shows that the impacts of disabilities are widespread across many aspects of an individual’s life, and can be detrimental to psychological wellbeing and quality of life. Yet people with long-term disabilities do not necessarily believe that their impairments have a significant impact on their quality of life, particularly when suitable adaptations are available. The onset of disability appears to be influential, as individuals with congenital disabilities exhibit higher degrees of life satisfaction, self-identity, and self-efficacy than individuals who have had to adapt to an acquired disability.

A great deal of research has been conducted to better understand how to define and measure quality of life in relation to disability and impairment, and yet there is still much to be explored and learnt.

Dr. Nathan Bray
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Disabilities is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • disability
  • disabilities
  • quality of life
  • capability
  • wellbeing
  • adaptation
  • assistive technology

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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11 pages, 693 KiB  
Article
Cross-Cultural Adaptation and Psychometric Properties of the SF-8 Questionnaire in Tanzanian Swahili for Injury Population
Disabilities 2022, 2(3), 428-438; https://doi.org/10.3390/disabilities2030030 - 23 Jul 2022
Viewed by 1488
Abstract
Background: There is a lack of tools to screen for health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in acute injury patients, despite the critical need for having a good understanding of the characteristics of mental health during the rehabilitation process. The SF-8 instrument, a [...] Read more.
Background: There is a lack of tools to screen for health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in acute injury patients, despite the critical need for having a good understanding of the characteristics of mental health during the rehabilitation process. The SF-8 instrument, a shorter version of the SF-36, is the most widely used patient-based assessment of HRQoL. The aim of this research is to adapt the psychometric properties of the SF-8 to Swahili. Methods: This study is a secondary data analysis of previously collected and psychometric evaluation of the culturally adapted and translated SF-8. A cross-cultural adaptation committee carried out the process of translation to provide validity evidence based on test content. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to test the internal structure-based evidence. The validity based on relation to other variables (discriminant evidence) was tested using polychoric correlation with PHQ-2 (Patient Health Questionnaire-2). The reliability was tested using Cronbach’s alpha, Omega McDonald, and Composite Reliability. Results: 1434 adults who suffered an acute injury and presented to the emergency department between April 2018 and August 2020 were included in the study. The instrument demonstrated language clarity and domain coherence, showing validity evidence based on test content. The CFA (Confirmatory Factor Analysis) analysis showed good fit indices for both models (one- and two-factor models) of the SF-8. The discriminant evidence showed that SF-8 scores correlate strongly with the PHQ-2 instrument. These results supported the validity evidence in relation to other variables. All analyses of reliability were considered adequate with values above 0.90 for both models of the SF-8. Conclusions: The results show that the SF-8 instrument can provide relevant information about the health-related quality of life of acute injury patients, and allow practitioners to gain a better understanding of mental health, improving the treatment and follow-up of injury patients within Tanzanian culture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Disabilities and Quality of Life)
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23 pages, 5609 KiB  
Article
Wheelchair Skills Education and Training for Children with Spina Bifida and/or Hydrocephalus and Their Parents: A Pilot Study
Disabilities 2022, 2(1), 96-118; https://doi.org/10.3390/disabilities2010009 - 22 Feb 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4143
Abstract
Background: Many children with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus use manual wheelchairs. However, training to ensure appropriate wheelchair use is limited and informal, and this negatively impacts daily activity and participation. Evidence suggests formal training can increase children’s confidence and independence, with early intervention [...] Read more.
Background: Many children with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus use manual wheelchairs. However, training to ensure appropriate wheelchair use is limited and informal, and this negatively impacts daily activity and participation. Evidence suggests formal training can increase children’s confidence and independence, with early intervention being critical for healthy development. In Ireland, like in many other regions internationally, such interventions are not readily available to families. Aim and objectives: The overall aim of the study was to pilot wheelchair skills training for children aged 3–8 years with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus and their parents, to develop a sustainable program. The objectives were: (1) to develop and evaluate a wheelchair skills information pack; (2) to investigate the impact of training on children’s performance of wheelchair skills; (3) to explore parents’ perspectives on how training influenced their children’s daily participation; (4) to identify beneficial aspects of program delivery for children and parents. Methods: We applied a mixed-methods study design that included three stages: (1) evaluation of the use of a bespoke wheelchair skills information pack; (2) within-subject pre-post analysis of the wheelchair skills test (WST) and individual training goals; (3) qualitative thematic analysis of Photovoice documentary narratives from focus groups with parents. Results: Four children and their parents participated in the study. Parents reported the wheelchair skills information pack to be useful, recommending more child-friendly images, and the provision of the pack when children first receive their wheelchairs. Analysis of the pre/post-WST showed an increase in the performance of skills. Parents’ perspectives and experiences are captured in two Photovoice themes: (1) children developing their skills, (2) supporting parents to support their children. Conclusion: The pilot program was a success for these families, highlighting potential gaps in Irish wheelchair provision services and the need for wheelchair skills education and training to support parents and children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Disabilities and Quality of Life)
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15 pages, 460 KiB  
Article
The Prognostic Factors and Required Degree Influencing the Activities of Daily Living and Gait in Brain Impairment Patients with Hemiplegia
Disabilities 2021, 1(3), 187-201; https://doi.org/10.3390/disabilities1030015 - 27 Jul 2021
Viewed by 3025
Abstract
To improve the independence of brain impairment patients in ADL, we sought to identify influential parameters from information commonly collected in hospitals, prioritize the factors, and specify the degree to which those factors are necessary. In total, 64 patients with hemiplegia, who had [...] Read more.
To improve the independence of brain impairment patients in ADL, we sought to identify influential parameters from information commonly collected in hospitals, prioritize the factors, and specify the degree to which those factors are necessary. In total, 64 patients with hemiplegia, who had been admitted to the one of the authors, were examined using various evaluation tools. Afterwards, we checked the difference between the capable group and the incapable group with an independent t-test or chi-squared test to determine the significant factors, and we prioritized the significant factors with Spearman’s rho test. The degree of their necessity was determined with the ROC curve. Standing balancing ability and hip joint and knee extensor strength are necessary in most ADL except for eating. In order to independently perform most ADL except eating and one gait cycle, the strength of the knee extensor and hip flexor was required to exceed grade 3 on the MRC scale. However, one gait cycle was possible even if the strength of the hip joint and knee extensors rated lower than 3 on the MRC scale. Additionally, upper limb motor recovery was required up to the distal parts in the order of bathing, dressing, and grooming. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Disabilities and Quality of Life)
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Review

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15 pages, 601 KiB  
Review
Housing, Transportation and Quality of Life among People with Mobility Limitations: A Critical Review of Relationships and Issues Related to Access to Home- and Community-Based Services
Disabilities 2022, 2(2), 204-218; https://doi.org/10.3390/disabilities2020015 - 08 Apr 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3079
Abstract
Anecdotal reports suggest that adequate housing and transportation could be fundamental elements required to ensure quality of life (QOL) for people with mobility limitations. Certain home- and community-based services (HCBS) are also necessary to ensure that housing and transportation needs are met. Understanding [...] Read more.
Anecdotal reports suggest that adequate housing and transportation could be fundamental elements required to ensure quality of life (QOL) for people with mobility limitations. Certain home- and community-based services (HCBS) are also necessary to ensure that housing and transportation needs are met. Understanding QOL as it relates to housing and transportation is critical for people with mobility limitations but requires appropriate assessment of these constructs. The aims of this research were to explore the relationships between housing and transportation on QOL for people with mobility limitations, to describe the current conceptual measurement issues and to propose dimensions of access that could facilitate assessment of QOL as it relates to housing, transportation and HCBS. A critical review of the literature was conducted by experts in disability, QOL and access theory. While evidence indicated a potential influence of housing and transportation on QOL for people with mobility limitations, the relationships between these concepts were weak and inconclusive. Moreover, the measurement tools used lacked appropriateness to specifically measure these constructs. Approaching these measurement issues within an access theory may better position future research to address the housing, transportation and HSBS needs of people with mobility limitations. Future research may consider elements of availability, accessibility, accommodation, affordability, acceptability and awareness to ensure access for people with mobility limitations. A better understanding of QOL as it relates to housing, transportation and HCBS will improve the quality of research, which may in turn improve access of adequate services for people with mobility limitations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Disabilities and Quality of Life)
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