Journal Article

Health survey research on children with physical disabilities in Canada

I. V. Kalnins, C. Steele, E. Stevens, B. Rossen, D. Biggar, J. Jutai and J. Bortolussi

in Health Promotion International

Volume 14, issue 3, pages 251-260
Published in print September 1999 | ISSN: 0957-4824
Published online September 1999 | e-ISSN: 1460-2245 | DOI:
Health survey research on children with physical disabilities in Canada

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Knowledge about health behaviours of children with physical disabilities is important in health promotion efforts to prevent the development of secondary conditions. To this end, we discuss the feasibility of including children with physical disabilities, e.g. spina bifida and cerebral palsy, in mainstream children's health behaviour surveys, e.g. the international Health Behaviour of School-aged Children: A WHO Cross-national Survey (HBSC). Our findings showed that the survey questions about lifestyles, peers, family and schools were relevant to these children. However, recruitment of a representative sample and survey administration required considerable adaptation to recommended protocol. We propose that for children with moderate or severe disabilities, who have low reading skills or motor problems, special substudies linked to national health behaviour surveys should be carried out. However, for a more population-based approach, the utility of routinely including questions about physical disabilities and other health problems in national and international health behaviour surveys should be investigated.

Keywords: children; health behaviours; lifestyles; physical disabilities

Journal Article.  4874 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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