4430.0.10.001 - Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: First Results, 2015  
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APPENDIX 2 - DISABILITY GROUPS

Disability groups

1
Disabilities can be broadly grouped depending on whether they relate to functioning of the mind or the senses, or to anatomy or physiology. Each disability group may refer to a single disability or be composed of a number of broadly similar disabilities. The SDAC module relating to disability groups was designed to identify five separate groups based on the particular type of disability identified.

2
These groups are:

Sensory
    • loss of sight (not corrected by glasses or contact lenses)
    • loss of hearing where communication is restricted, or an aid to assist with, or substitute for, hearing is used
    • speech difficulties.

Intellectual
          • difficulty learning or understanding.

Physical
    • shortness of breath or breathing difficulties that restrict everyday activities
    • blackouts, seizures or loss of consciousness
    • chronic or recurrent pain or discomfort that restricts everyday activities
    • incomplete use of arms or fingers
    • difficulty gripping or holding things
    • incomplete use of feet or legs
    • restriction in physical activities or in doing physical work
    • disfigurement or deformity.

Psychosocial
    • nervous or emotional condition that restricts everyday activities
    • mental illness or condition requiring help or supervision
    • memory problems or periods of confusion that restrict everyday activities
    • social or behavioural difficulties that restrict everyday activities.

Head injury, stroke or acquired brain injury
    • head injury, stroke or other acquired brain injury, with long-term effects that restrict everyday activities.

3 The following categories were not included in any of the five groups above, but were included in the total:
  • receiving treatment or medication for any other long-term conditions or ailments and still restricted in everyday activities
  • any other long-term conditions resulting in a restriction in everyday activities.

4 In the disability groups module people could be counted more than once if they had multiple disabilities which belonged to more than one disability group. For example, a person with a hearing loss and speech difficulties would be counted once in the sensory disability group. However, a person with a hearing loss and a physical deformity would be counted once in the sensory disability group and once in the physical disability group. As a result, the sum of the components of data from the disability groups module does not add to the total persons with disabilities.