Eliminating Health And Health Care Disparities Among The Growing Population Of People With Disabilities

Iezzoni, Lisa I.
October 2011
Health Affairs;Oct2011, Vol. 30 Issue 10, p1947
Academic Journal
Fifty-four million people in the United States are now living with disabilities. That number will grow substantially in the next thirty years, as the "baby-boom" generation ages and many of today's children and young adults mature and experience complications related to overweight and obesity. This reality poses a major challenge to the health care and policy communities. People with disabilities confront disadvantages from social and environmental determinants of health, including lower educational levels, lower incomes, and higher unemployment, than people without disabilities. Those with disabilities are also much more likely to report being in fair or poor health; to use tobacco; to forgo physical activity; and to be overweight or obese. People with disabilities also experience health care disparities, such as lower rates of screening and more difficulty accessing services, compared to people without disabilities. Eliminating these multifaceted disadvantages among people with disabilities should be a critical national priority.


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