Focus Group

In: Social Issues

Submitted By jyotsna
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Natl Med J India. 2000 Sep-Oct;13(5):237-41.
Issues related to disability in India: a focus group study.
Pal HR, Saxena S, Chandrashekhar K, Sudha SJ, Murthy RS, Thara R, Srinivasan TN, Gupta D, Singh U.
All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi 110029, India.
Abstract
BACKGROUND: Systematic research into disability has been scarce, especially from India, even though an estimated 5% of the population may have significant disability due to physical disorders. Depression as a common psychiatric disorder affects about 3%-5% of the population. Thus, the impact of disability related to physical, mental and substance use disorders is enormous and it influences resource allocation and policy planning.
METHODS: The issues relating to disability were addressed through a qualitative multicentered study. Focus groups were conducted at three sites in Chennai, Bangalore and Delhi on three themes: (i) parity, stigmatization and social participation; (ii) current practices and needs; and (iii) the General Disability Model as proposed by the World Health Organization. The focus groups were homogeneous and included members from six categories of participants: individuals with physical disability, individuals with mental disability, individuals with alcohol/drug-related disability, family members of mentally disabled persons, family members of physically disabled persons and health professionals. In all, 118 groups were conducted with a mean (SD) group size of 8.6 (1.6).
RESULTS: Patients with mental and alcohol/drug-related disability were more discriminated against than those with physical disability. Awareness regarding the existing laws and social programmes was uniformly poor across the three centres. Stigmatization was a major reason for under-utilization of the meagre resources available. There was poor awareness of the Disability Act, 1996. The consumers felt…...

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