A U.S. senior health official on Tuesday designated people with disabilities as a population with health disparities for research supported by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH).
“This designation recognizes the importance and need for research advances to improve our understanding of the complexities leading to disparate health outcomes and multilevel interventions,” said Eliseo J. Pérez-Stable, director of the U.S. National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, who made the decision.
The designation is one of several steps NIH is taking to address health disparities faced by people with disabilities and ensure their representation in research.
Designated populations experience significant disparities in their rates of illness, morbidity, mortality and survival, driven by social disadvantage, compared to the health status of the general population, NIH said in a statement.
A health disparity designation helps to encourage research specific to the health issues and unmet health needs of these populations, according to NIH.