Disabilities and rehabilitation

Expert group meets to revise the Model Disability Survey (MDS)

An expert group met in Geneva on 25-26 February to review the results of the cognitive testing and revise the MDS in light of the findings.

The MDS is a general population survey tool that when administered provides detailed information on the lives of people with disability. Once finalized, it will allow for a better understanding of disability and comparison between groups with differing levels and profiles of disability, including comparison to people without disability.

The evidence resulting from use of the MDS will help policy-makers identify which interventions are required to maximize the inclusion and functioning of people with disability. The MDS has been developed following an in-depth review of 179 disability surveys.

Drafts of the questionnaire have been reviewed in expert consultations before being tested. Cognitive testing has been carried out on the instrument in Malawi, Norway and the United States to evaluate whether the questions perform as intended.

Results from this first round of cognitive testing were reviewed at the expert group meeting and changes made to the order and wording of the questions in light of the test results. Additional cognitive testing will be carried out in Cambodia, China, Nepal and the United States.

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