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Technology and Disability communicates knowledge about the field of assistive technology devices and services, within the context of the lives of end users - persons with disabilities and their family members. While the topics are technical in nature, the articles are written for broad comprehension despite the reader's education or training.
Technology and Disability's contents cover research and development efforts, education and training programs, service and policy activities and consumer experiences.
The term Technology refers to assistive devices and services.
- The term Disability refers to both permanent and temporary functional limitations experienced by people of any age within any circumstance.
- The term and underscores the editorial commitment to seek for articles which see technology linked to disability as a means to support or compensate the person in daily functioning.
The Editor also attempts to link the themes of technology and disability through the selection of appropriate basic and applied research papers, review articles, case studies, programme descriptions, letters to the Editor and commentaries. Suggestions for thematic issues and proposed manuscripts are welcomed.
Abstract: Self-management interventions help improve health behaviors and outcomes. People with physical disabilities are more prone to various chronic conditions. A better understanding of the disability-focused self-management interventions is needed. This study aims to review the impact of self-management interventions on adult individuals with physical disabilities and chronic conditions. A scoping review of the literature was conducted on August 19th, 2021, through a search in the PubMed, MEDLINE, and EMBASE databases to synthesize results from original studies regarding the impact of self-management interventions on adult individuals with physical disabilities and chronic conditions. The review was undertaken in accordance with the Preferred…Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Synthesis without meta-analysis (Swim) guideline. Seventy-nine records were extracted from 3069 individual articles retrieved from the search strategy. We summarized the evidence on the content and behavior change skills, technology use, disease adjustment skills, and frequently used outcomes, including various physical, behavioral, and emotional symptoms. The results demonstrate promising evidence that self-management interventions are effective at improving health outcomes in people with physical disabilities and chronic conditions. By addressing the research gaps, the findings specify the essential contours for future research and disability-inclusive self-management programs.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Technology-driven assistive devices provide numerous benefits to people with severe visual impairments, yet device take-up rates are often low. OBJECTIVE: The study sought to determine the strengths of connections between transportation self-efficacy, technophobia, personal inertia, innovation resistance, and willingness to adopt high-tech transportation assistive devices among visually impaired individuals. It also examined certain potential barriers to device acceptance; namely the perceived safety and complexity of assistive devices and the effects on a person’s self-image of using a device. METHODS: A model was developed and tested via a questionnaire survey of 319 people…with visual disabilities, each of whom was presented with five examples of hypothetical high-tech mobility and transportation assistive devices. RESULTS: Technophobia exerted a powerful negative impact on innovation resistance and was itself significantly determined in part by transportation self-efficacy. Personal inertia and the effects of device use on self-image failed to impact significantly on the participants’ levels of innovation resistance. CONCLUSIONS: The results have implications for the promotional activities of manufacturers of mobility and transportation assistive devices and for visual disability support organisations that wish to secure acceptance of new assistive devices.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: People with advanced Alzheimer’s disease tend to be sedentary and passive unless staff intervene to support their occupation. OBJECTIVE: This pilot study assessed the impact of a technology-aided program set up to help participants at the low end of the moderate or at the severe level of the disease access preferred stimulation and carry out simple/basic activities involving the use of everyday objects. METHODS: The program (a) relied on the use of a tablet, a voice-recording device, and a mini speaker and (b) provided the participants with verbal and visual instructions to…guide them in carrying out the activity steps and accessing preferred stimulation. The program was implemented with five participants according to a nonconcurrent multiple baseline across participants design. RESULTS: During the baseline phase (i.e., prior to the use of the program), the participants carried out less than 15% of the activity steps and relied on the research assistants to access preferred stimulation (songs). During the intervention phase (i.e., with the program), the participants’ percentage of activity steps carried out increased to between about 58 and 92. Moreover, all participants were largely successful in accessing preferred stimulation. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that the technology-aided program used in this study might help increase the level of positive occupation of people with advanced Alzheimer’s disease.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Children with Down syndrome (DS) may struggle adjusting their posture during gait or standing and tend to adapt slower to demanding motor tasks and environmental changes. The functionality in their daily activities is frequently diminished or they are slower, with poor postural control and balance as possible reasons. There is limited research on exercise programmes to improve postural control in children with DS. OBJECTIVE: To determine the effectivenes of an exercise programm with the Nintendo Wii Balance Board (NWBB) interface o postural control and functional balance of children with DS. METHODS: Participants…were five children age 6–9 years belonging to the legal organization Espacio Down (in Talca, Chile), who underwen an exercise programm with the NWBB. The duration of the intervention wa 9 weeks, with two 25-minute sessions per week and a total intervention timeof 7.5 hours for each subject. Postural control pre-/postintervention was evaluated at a functional level with clinical tests: Timed Up and Go (TUG), One-Leg Standing (TOLS) and posturographic measures using centre of pressure (CoP) variables Descriptive statistics and the Wilcoxon test were applied, with p < 0.05 considered to be significant. RESULTS: Th NWBB programme showed a significant decrease in the CoP total velocity, mean velocity and displacements in themediolateral and anteroposterior directions (p = 0.021) for the closed-eyes condition and a decrease in the time of the TUG test (p = 0.021). CONCLUSIONS: This pilot study provides initial evidence for the effectiveness of the NWBB programme in children with DS. A 9-week NWBB programme improves the postural control and functional balanceof children with DS.
Keywords: Down syndrome, postural control, balance, center of pressure
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The recent COVID-19 pandemic like situation has killed a large numbers of people and caused havoc across the world. With the aim of providing the COVID-19 related updated information about facilities, availability, utilization of COVID-19 related resources like vaccines, hospitals, beds, oxygen to the people and preventing its surge, many websites were developed for health guidance to the general masses. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this paper is to investigate the accessibility and usability of websites providing COVID-19 information in India. METHODS: This study evaluates the 38 websites providing COVID-19 information in India…using automated tools. RESULTS: It was found that digital healthcare information is far from accessibility conformance and none of the websites conformed to web content accessibility guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 completely. The website adhered to understandability with average errors of 2.8 while less compliant to perceivability with average errors of 30.5. It was also found that most of the websites were mobile friendly.
Keywords: Web accessibility, COVID-19, healthcare, WCAG 2.0, performance, usability