Disability Inclusion

Approximately one-in-four individuals in the United States live with some form of disability. People living with disabilities face barriers to activities in daily life, and consideration of their unique needs is critical to prevent exacerbation of these barriers.

To promote health equity for people with disabilities, public health planning efforts should be intentional and inclusive. Inclusion of people living with disabilities in public health preparedness efforts can promote health equity through current and future pandemics and other emergencies.

ASTHO has identified health equity as a strategic priority and supports its members in their quest to increase disability inclusion through capacity building, partnerships, workforce development, and data collection.

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10 Essential Questions on Disability Inclusion in Health Agencies thumbnail

10 Essential Questions on Disability Inclusion in Health Agencies

Health agencies can use this infographic to help foster conversations around planning programs, policies, and activities to better serve individuals with disabilities.

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Embedded: Disability and Preparedness Specialist Project

The Embedded series shares reflections and expertise from ASTHO’s cohort of disability and preparedness specialists embedded into jurisdictional health agencies around the country.

Explore the program
Colorful illustration of silhouettes of many disabled people and their aids

Defining Disability for Syndromic Surveillance

This ASTHOBrief describes reflections from disability professionals on developing a diagnostic code-based definition of disability to help identify people living with disabilities during emergencies.

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Latest Disability Inclusion Resources

An ambulance racing on a stormy night with motion-blurred lights
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State, Territorial Health Policies Strengthening Emergency Preparedness Efforts

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Partnering with the Autism Community on Inclusive Emergency Preparedness

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Disabled people on wheelchairs going onto a public bus
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Public Health Emergency Planning Toolkit

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Mid-section shot of a woman switching on a medical machine.
articleBrief

Louisiana Aims to Recharge Neighbors’ Battery-Powered Life Support Equipment

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States Leverage COVID-19 Relief Funding to Improve Accessibility for People Living With Disabilities

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State and Territorial Caregiver Wellness Policies May Reduce Adverse Childhood Experiences

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Illustration of a diverse group of happy, disabled people
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Embedded: Meeting Needs for Disability-Inclusive Emergency Preparedness in South Carolina

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Colorful illustration of silhouettes of many disabled people and their aids
articleBrief

Defining Disability for Syndromic Surveillance

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Collaborations

ASTHO leads a learning community for the disability and preparedness specialists placed in state and territorial health agencies. This learning community creates a dedicated space for ASTHO and specialists to share resources to increase agency capacity to include people living with disabilities in emergency preparedness.

ASTHO also collaborates with a diverse group of stakeholders ranging from philanthropy, non-profit, academia and health care, including:

  • Association of University Centers on Disability
  • CDC’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities
  • National Association of County and City Health Officials
  • Powered for Patients
  • World Institute on Disabilities (WID)
  • University of Pittsburgh