Disability data: challenges in designing, implementing and interpreting current statistics

Eric Lauer, epidemiologist at the Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire, USA presented a seminar at SDHI. He highlighted the complex challenges to produce accurate, inclusive and meaningful data in the context of national health and community surveys. In his presentation he provided examples from widely used and cited US data sources, including the Census, American Community, Medical Expenditure Panel and National Health Interview Survey. He discussed sources and processes of exclusion and the risk for bias. Uncritical use of the data may lead to policy solutions that are not representative of the population they intend to address. Due to a sound error we are unable to post the video of the presentation. Our apologies. Please see the slide presentation below.


Forthcoming Seminar – Disability Surveillance using National Household Surveys in the United States: Where have we been and where are we going?

Eric A Lauer Headshot 3SDHI are delighted to announce the following seminar ‘Disability Surveillance using National Household Surveys in the United States: Where have we been and where are we going?’ which will be led by Eric Lauer, Research Specialist, Institute on Disability, University of New Hampshire, USA.  This seminar will be held in Room 2F13, Dalhousie Building, University of Dundee at 1.00pm on Monday 25th March.   For further information please see seminar flyer

Older people struggle with new hearing aids

A multi-method study by Tim Kelly and colleagues in Dundee and Glasgow has highlighted that approximately 50% of older people receiving hearing aids report that they did not receive sufficient information and preparation to use the device. Details from the study can be found in an article that was just published in the journal Health and Social Care in the Community. 

Patient reported outsomes (PROMS) in COPD not validated for people with learning disabilities and low literacy

A newly published review paper demonstrate that generic and condition-specific patient-reported outcome measures have not been developed with people who may struggle with reading and comprehension. It is estimated that 1 in 5 people in the UK have difficulty in locating specific services in the Yellow Pages or reading a newspaper. And we see a growing number of people developing cognitive impairments during the life course (e.g dementia). Cumulatively the population segment excluded through measures deemed to reflect ‘the patient’s perspective’ (although more often than not it is rather a response on a measure to what researchers and clinicians think matters!) is substantial. The drive to routinely use these measures as integral to ‘quality improvement’ in services comes at the cost of excluding people who cannot engage meaningfully with these tools from this process. This would be a violation of equality, disability and human rights legislation and has the potential of widening inequalities. The review paper can be found here #[Patient Reported Outcomes in COPD| http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/23417577/

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Dundee University promotes inclusive learning through staff training and award

Submissions are currently being invited for the University of Dundee’s inclusive practice award. This award recognises good practice across the University that removes barriers to access for disabled students or others protected by the Equality Act. It is open to College and SASS-based staff and takes the form of a £1,000 practice development fund. The deadline for submission this year is the 29th March. Further information is available from Shirley Hill (s.hill@dundee.ac.uk) or Lorraine Walsh (l.walsh@dundee.ac.uk) and from: http://www.dundee.ac.uk/library/teachingexcellence/supportingscholarship/awards-201112/

In addition, as part of the InspirED programme, Disability Services is running staff training sessions this semester on supporting students with hearing impairments (on the 19th March) and also on inclusive learning and teaching practice (on the 18th April) . Additional training is planned for next academic session on supporting students with dyslexia and also on the provision of alternative and accessible formats of teaching and other materials. For further details of all of our staff training opportunities or to request specific training for your School/Service, please email disability @dundee.ac.uk

Hot off the press: In the BMJ ‘Will prescriptions for cultural change improve the NHS?”

In England, the recent Francis inquiry into the appalling standards of care at Mid-Staffordshire NHS Trust identified a dysfunctional culture as a key part of the problem. The report goes on to make a number of recommendations for culture change in the NHS. A recent piece in the BMJ by Huw Davies & Russell Mannion challenges whether such cultural prescriptions can be enacted so easily. Read the article here.