What is disability?
Disability is an interaction between:
- permanent or long-term impairment (i.e. vision loss, dementia, amputation)
- activity limitation (i.e. difficulty communicating, with self-care, making decisions)
- participation restriction (i.e. inclusion in work, community and family life).
Participation is also affected by factors in our social and physical environments such as attitudes, processes, equipment and building inclusion for people with disability.
How many people have disability?
Nearly 1 in 5 (18%) Queenslanders live with disability and rates are 1.8 times higher for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In the Metro South region:
- more than 180,000 residents have disability
- 1 in 20 residents (4.8%) experience severe or profound disability and need support for everyday activities.
Types of disability
Affects senses such as vision or hearing.
Examples: Deaf or hard of hearing; blind or vision-impaired.
Affects strength, dexterity, movement or physical function.
Examples: Person uses a wheelchair; rheumatoid arthritis.
Intellectual or cognitive disability
Affects thinking, memory, or ability to make decisions.
Examples: Down Syndrome; dementia; Autism.
Persistent mental health issues which affect function.
Examples: Schizophrenia; Bipolar Disorder.
Conditions which affect the brain, spine or nerves.
Examples: Stroke; brain or spinal injury; Multiple Sclerosis.
Medical conditions can have diverse impacts on function.
Examples: Chronic fatigue; chronic pain.
People may experience multiple disabilities.