|Title||Using the international classification of functioning, disability and health to expand understanding of paralysis in the United States through improved surveillance.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2015|
|Authors||Fox, MH, Krahn, GL, Sinclair, LB, Cahill, A|
|Journal||Disability and health journal|
BACKGROUND: Surveillance on paralysis prevalence has been conceptually and methodologically challenging. Numerous methods have been used to approximate population-level paralysis prevalence estimates leading to widely divergent prevalence estimates. OBJECTIVE/HYPOTHESES: To describe three phases in use of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) as a framework and planning tool for defining paralysis and developing public health surveillance of this condition. METHODS: Description of the surveillance methodology covers four steps: an assessment of prior data collection efforts that included a review of existing surveys, registries and other data collection efforts designed to capture both case definitions in use and prevalence of paralysis; use of a consensus conference of experts to develop a case definition of paralysis based on the ICF rather than medical diagnostic criteria; explanation of use of the ICF framework for domains of interest to develop, cognitively test, validate and administer a brief self-report questionnaire for telephone administration on a population; and development and administration of a Paralysis Prevalence and Health Disparities Survey that used content mapping to back code items from existing national surveys to operationalize key domains. RESULTS: ICF coding led to a national population-based survey of paralysis that produced accurate estimates of prevalence and identification of factors related to the health of people in the U.S. living with paralysis. CONCLUSIONS: The ICF can be a useful tool for developing valid and reliable surveillance strategies targeting subgroups of individuals with functional disabilities such as people with paralysis and others.