Blog Home

Archive: January 2013 (X)

  • Self-advocacy is the ability to assert oneself and communicate clearly about one’s needs. The AAIDD page on self-advocacy defines self advocacy for those with a disability in the following way:

    “Advocacy gives a person with a disability a chance speak up for themselves and others. By letting individuals tell others how they feel about issues that affect their lives, they can educate the public about persons with disabilities and how they can be included in all aspects of community life.” http://www.aaidd.org/content_192.cfm?navID=69

    According to the 2011-2012 NCI data, 31% of all respondents stated that they had had the opportunity to participate in a self advocacy event. 

    It is compelling to look at whether a respondent has had the opportunity to participate in self advocacy by age (Table 1).

    Table 1: Opportunity to participate in self advocacy by age in 2011-2012

     

    Age   categories

    Total

    18-25

    26-40

    41-65

    66+

    No

    77%

    69%

    67%

    71%

    69%

    Had opportunity

    23%

    31%

    33%

    29%

    31%

     

    It is interesting to note that the individuals who claim to have had the least opportunity to participate in self-advocacy are those between the ages of 18 and 25, followed by those aged 66 and above.

    Fortunately, there are several resources available for individuals who would like to participate in self advocacy, or for those who would like to encourage others to become self advocates. Self-advocacy Online (www.selfadvocacyonline.org) is a site designed by the Research & Training Center on Community Living out of the University of Minnesota. The site is easy to navigate and offers several tools, videos and tutorials to encourage individuals to pursue self-advocacy. There are links to local self-advocacy organizations, and a page for news on self-advocacy. Perhaps the most motivational aspect of the site is the page dedicated to personal reflections on self-advocacy. These short video clips show self-advocates discussing the importance of speaking up for oneself and actively promoting one’s best interests.

    In addition, the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD) identified a need to better understand the current state of the self advocacy movement. As a result, AIDD, in collaboration with the Developmental Disabilities network, self-advocates, and allies, organized a series of nine regional summits across the country. The summits, held in 2011 and 2012, aimed to promote understanding and collaboration between self advocates and state and local policy makers. Here is the website created from the summits http://alliesinselfadvocacy.org/. From these summits, several summary reports were produced. They can be seen here http://alliesinselfadvocacy.org/2012-summit-report-2/ . We can hope for more self advocate participation in the policy making process in the future!

    Please note: The 2011-12 data reports will be released and placed on the NCI website this Spring.  For more in depth analysis of previous year’s NCI consumer survey data, please see http://www.nationalcoreindicators.org.

  • A nationwide flu outbreak has already caused alarm across the country. Public health organizations have mobilized to spread the word about the virus and encourage everyone to get vaccinated. Many cities across the US have declared a Public Health emergency, urging residents to take flu prevention seriously, and to stay home if feeling sick.

    The ramp up of the campaign to encourage vaccination made us curious about what NCI data says about the flu vaccine.  Of the ID/DD population receiving public services, who has been vaccinated in the past year? Who hasn’t? Are there trends? It is important to remember that this is 2011-2012 data, collected before the current flu outbreak. Vaccination rates may have increased recently in light of the epidemic. 

    For this assessment of the data, we used preliminary data from the 2011-2012 administration of the Adult Consumer Survey (CS). The CS is given to adults (aged 18 and above) with ID/DD.

    Of those who responded to the NCI question on the flu vaccine in the background section (“During the past 12 months, has this person had a flu vaccine?” N= 8385) 78.1% had received a flu vaccine in the past year. According to the CDC, among adults aged 18 and above, the national vaccination rate was 38.8%. The CDC data demonstrates whether the respondent received a flu vaccine between August 2011 and May 2012. (http://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/coverage_1112estimates.htm).   

    Perhaps not surprising is the relationship between residence type and flu vaccine. Clearly, it is in the best interest of individuals living in group living environments to be vaccinated to prevent outbreaks of the flu.  Noteworthy, however, is the lower rate of vaccination experienced by individuals living with parents or relatives.

     

    Residence Type

    Total

    Institutional

    Community   based

    Independent   home

    Parent/relative’s   home

    Foster   care/host home

    Other

    Flu   vacc. in past 12 mos.

     

     

     

    YES

    96.3%

    88.3%

    72.0%

    60.4%

    77.3%

    82.6%

    78.1%

    Total   N

    491

    3586

    1038

    2301

    510

    459

    8385

    Also interesting is the relationship between flu vaccine and age.  Of those respondents between the ages of 18 and 49, 71.4% had been vaccinated for the flu within the past 12 months. Similarly, 86.6% of respondents between the ages of 50 and 64 had been vaccinated, and a 92.2% of respondents aged 65 and above. Also included in this table are the national data from the Center for Disease Control. Again, this data demonstrates whether the respondent received a flu vaccine between August 2011 and May 2012. For individuals aged 18-49, the flu vaccination rate for individuals with ID/DD is roughly 2.5 times that of the general population. The rate for individuals aged 50-64 with ID/DD is roughly twice that of the general population. The rate for individuals with ID/DD aged 65 and above is also noteworthy.

    Flu   vacc. in past 12 mos.

    Age   Categories

    18-49

    50-64

    65<

     

    NCI Data

    71.4%

    86.6%

    92.2%

    CDC Data*

    28.6%

    42.7%

    64.9%

    *(http://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/coverage_1112estimates.htm ). Also, this data demonstrates whether the respondent received a flu vaccine between August 2011 and May 2012

     We’d love to hear your response to this data.

    Please note: The 2011-12 data reports will be released and placed on the NCI website this Spring.  For more in depth analysis of previous year’s NCI consumer survey data, please see http://www.nationalcoreindicators.org.