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What is Disability?

“Disability” is a complex, global phenomenon. According to United Nations over one billion people, or approximately 15 per cent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability.  In most countries, at least 1 out of 10 persons has a disability with physical, mental, or sensory impairment. What is disability? Though they are different, terms such as functional impairment, disability, and handicap often are used interchangeably. The World Health Organization (WHO) offered a comprehensive International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) as an operational standard (adopted by 191 member states of WHO) to facilitate policy development, economic analyses, and research uses involving disability (WHO 2002). ICF is complementary to WHO’s International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10). ICF offers core classification on function, while ICD offers core classification of health condition and diagnosis. ICF is organized around body function and structure, individual activities and task participation, and environmental factors. What is Disability