What is Physical Disability?
What is life-long physical disability?
Physical disability pertains to total or partial loss of a person’s bodily functions (eg walking, gross motor skills, bladder control etc) and total or partial loss of a part of the body (eg a person with an amputation).
What are some examples of life-long physical disabilities?
Examples of physical disability include
- cerebral palsy;
- upper limbs;
- muscular dystrophy;
- acquired spinal injury (paraplegia or quadriplegia);
- post-polio syndrome;
- spina bifida.
There are many different kinds of disability and a wide variety of situations which people experience.
Does this mean you have the disability from birth or childhood?
- The disability may exist from birth or be acquired later in life.
- A person may have one disability or a number of disabilities.
- A person may be treated as having a disability when in fact he or she does not.
- A person's disability may be apparent, such as loss of a limb; or hidden, such as epilepsy or post-polio syndrome.
- Disability may be more or less severe in its impact.
- People with the same disability are as likely as anyone else to have different abilities.
How is this different from a broken arm or leg?
A broken arm or leg usually heals up with a functional return to activity similar or the same as the ability before the fracture (break). The Physical Disability Council of NSW priorities focus on those people who have a physical disability which exists for the rest of their lives.
How many people in NSW live their lives with a physical disability?
Based on data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) the estimated number of people with a physical disability in NSW is 12.6%. The total population of NSW (June 2008) was 6.9672 million (ABS) which means an estimated number of nearly 30,000 people with a physical disability in NSW.