Methodology

City Groups   Washington Group

Washington Group on Disability Statistics

Photo Attribution: "Washington DC" by BKL - Licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Purpose

The main objective of the WG is the promotion and coordination of international cooperation in the area of health statistics by focusing on disability measures suitable for censuses and national surveys. The aim is to provide basic necessary information on disability which is comparable throughout the world. For the primary purpose of informing policy on equalization of opportunities, the WG has developed, tested internationally, and adopted a short set of disability measures suitable for use in censuses, sample-based national surveys, or other statistical formats.

A second priority is to recommend one or more extended sets of survey items to measure disability to be used as components of population surveys or as supplements to specialty surveys. To that end, the WG has developed, tested and adopted an extended set of questions on functioning; and, in collaboration with UNICEF, a child functioning module (CFM). Also,in collaboration with UNICEF, a module on inclusive education is currently being tested to identify barriers to school participation for children with disabilities as is a module on inclusive employment, developed in collaboration with the International Labour Organization (ILO). These extended sets of survey items are intended to be related to the short set of disability measures. The World Health Organization (WHO) International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) has been used as the basic framework for the development of all questions sets. The disability measures recommended by the WG, both short and extended, are accompanied by descriptions of their technical properties, and methodological guidance is given on their implementation and their applicability to population subgroups. The WG disseminates its work products globally through the world-wide web and scientific publications.

Year organized

2001

Points of contact: Washington Group Secretariat (NCHS, U.S.A.)

Cordell Golden
Statistician
National Center for Health Statistics
3311 Toledo Road
Hyattsville, MD 20782 (USA)
(Phone) 301-458-4237
(Fax) 301-458-4038
(Email) CGolden@cdc.gov

Mitch Loeb
Health Scientist
National Center for Health Statistics
3311 Toledo Road
Hyattsville, MD 20782 (USA)
(Phone) 301-458-4248
(Fax) 301-458-4038
(Email) MLoeb@cdc.gov

Julie Weeks
Chief, Aging and Chronic Disease Statistics Branch
National Center for Health Statistics
3311 Toledo Road
Hyattsville, MD 20782 (USA)
(Phone) 301-458-4562
(Fax) 301-458-4038
(Email) JWeeks@cdc.gov

Jennifer Madans
Associate Director for Science
National Center for Health Statistics
3311 Toledo Road
Hyattsville, MD 20782 (USA)
(Phone) 301-458-4500
(Fax) 301-458-4020
(Email) JMadans@cdc.gov

Participants

Representatives of national statistical offices, international organizations, and non-government organizations including international disability organizations have participated in the last 17 meetings. A summary including the major outcomes of the first 16 meetings can be found in the appendix.

Current country representatives include (from national statistical offices): Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Anguilla, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Benin, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Cambodia, Canada, Chad, Chile, China, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of China, Macao Special Administrative Region of China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Curacao, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Korea, Kosovo, Kuwait, Kyrgyz Republic, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Monserrat, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Niger, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, St. Lucia, St. Maarten, Samoa, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Syria, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. In the past, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Comoros, Ecuador, Nigeria, the Turks and Caicos Islands, Saudi Arabia, and United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland have also participated

Current non-government organizations include: Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), European Disability Forum, EUROSTAT, Handicap International, Higher Council for Affairs of Persons with Disabilities, Inter-American Institute on Disability, International Labour Organization, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, National Disability Authority-Ireland, Inter-American Development Bank, International Development Project, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Rehabilitation International, United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), United Nations Children's Fund, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia, United Nations Economic Commission of Europe, United Nations Statistics Division, World Bank, and World Health Organization.

Governmental Organizations of Persons with Disabilities: Coordenadoria Nacional para Integraçâo da Pessoa Portadora de Deficiência (CORDE) in Brazil, Secretaria Nacional para la Integración de las personas con Discapacidad (SENADIS) in Panama, and Disabled Organization for Legal Affairs and Social Economic Development (DOLASED) in Tanzania.

Report of the Seventeenth meeting: 31 October - 2 November 2017 in Sydney, Australia (WG-17):

WG-17 was jointly hosted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) of the Government of Australia.

The meeting was attended by 60 persons:

  • 29 representing national statistical authorities from 20 countries (Australia-7, Brazil, Cambodia-2, Ecuador, Fiji, Italy, Malawi, Mongolia, New Zealand-2, Russia, Samoa, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Sri Lanka-2, Tanzania, Thailand, Tonga, Uganda, Vanuatu, Vietnam);
  • 12 representatives from universities or national institutes of public health or other national research bodies or ministries (Australia-6, China, Ireland, South Africa, Netherlands, United Kingdom, United States);
  • 3 representatives from the US National Center for Health Statistics (WG Secretariat);
  • 9 representatives from organizations representing persons with disabilities (Australia Federation of Disability Organizations, Disability Rights Fund (Australia), First Peoples Disability Network (Australia), Handicap International, National Disability Insurance Agency, National Ethnic Disability Alliance (Australia), National Rehabilitation Center for Persons with Disabilities (Japan), Pacific Disability Forum-2);
  • 6 representatives from international organizations (DFAT-3, UK Department for International Development (DFID), United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), World Bank); and
  • 1 representative from a non-governmental organization (CBM Australia)

Objectives for WG-17 were to:

  • Provide up-dates on the WG tools and associated documentation (website);
  • Provide up-dates on the development of the modules on inclusive education and inclusive employment;
  • Provide an up-date on the development of questions to measure mental health;
  • Review regional and country activities and discuss potential regional collaborations; and
  • Review recent international activities in disability statistics
  • Approve work plan

Pre-meeting Sessions

The formal WG meeting was preceded by two pre-meeting sessions on 30 October. The first session provided a brief orientation for new members including an overview of the WG's history, objectives, organizational structure, current collaborations, and the development of its data collection tools. The second pre-meeting session was directed to representatives of national statistical offices (NSOs) focusing on issues related to the implementation of the WG questions and analysis of the resulting data. The session provided an overview of important issues to consider when implementing the WG questions including, recommended guidelines for translation, question administration and examples of how the WG questions can used to monitor the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through data disaggregation

WG Data Collection Tools - Guidance and Resources

The WG strives to make its products and documentation readily available to users on a public platform. To that end, the WG has developed a series of documents were introduced at WG-17. The documents are available online (http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/publications/implementing/) and cover the following topics:

  • Conceptualization and Measurement of Disability (outlining WG Tools)
  • WG Question set Implementation Guidelines
  • WG Question by Question Specifications
  • Translation Protocol
  • Analytic Guidelines including SPSS syntax

The WG has recently revised its website (http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/), making it more accessible and easier to navigate, as well as providing links to new and important information. In addition to the Implementation Guidelines mentioned above, the website hosts a series of blogs on experiences using the WG tools (http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/washington-group-blog/), and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/frequently-asked-questions/). A review of the new website and the additional features were provided at WG-17.

Workgroup updates

Inclusive Education

The WG has collaborated with UNICEF on the development of a module designed to measure facilitators and barriers to school participation. An update on the work accomplished in the past year, including the presentation of sample questions from the current version of the module were presented. Cognitive testing of the UNICEF/WG Module on Inclusive Education was carried out in the United States (2015), India (2016), Jamaica (2016), Cambodia (2017), and Kazakhstan (2017). Results from the cognitive tests will be used to inform revisions to the module. Additional cognitive testing and field testing of the revised module are scheduled to take place in 2018. The final module and implementation guidelines are expected to be ready by the next WG meeting.

Labor Force Surveys

The WG has begun a collaboration with ILO on the development of a disability module intended for use in labor force surveys. This workgroup, co-chaired by ILO and the Secretariat is developing a module for use in labor force surveys that will include WG Short Set plus some elements from the WG Extended Set on Functioning; namely, upper body functioning and affect (anxiety and depression). The disability module for Labor Force Surveys has undergone two rounds of cognitive testing in United States and after minor revisions was tested in India. Plans are for the next round of cognitive testing to be carried out in Mongolia. A full report of the results of cognitive testing will be available upon completion.

Psychosocial Functioning (formerly the Mental Health workgroup)

This workgroup, co-chaired by representatives from South Africa and Italy, has examined the performance of the WG questions on depression and anxiety. To date, the group has examined cross-cultural performance using data collected in Cameroon, Canada, India and the United States, and assessed approaches to creating a summary WG-Mental Health indicator. Future plans include conducting further analyses of the current WG affect measures using data collected in other countries, identifying additional universally-applicable psychosocial functioning measures, and examining additional domains of psychosocial functioning not currently captured by the existing WG affect measures.

Analysis

Chaired by the Secretariat, this workgroup has addressed the development of analytic guidelines and computer syntax for the determination of a set of disability identifiers (based on different severity cutoffs and describing the continuum of disability) for each of the WG-SS, WG-ES and the CFM. The current work plan is being developed and may address the determination of mutually exclusive categories such as mild disability, moderate and severe disability; burden measures such as the number of domains involved at different cut-offs.

Administrative data

The administrative data workgroup was constituted at WG-17 and is developing a work plan to assess the feasibility of collecting disability data through administrative sources. This workgroup, co-chaired by South Africa and the Secretariat, will focus on the use of administrative systems for the collection of disability information.

Regional Capacity Building

An update was provided on the WG's regional capacity building efforts. Over the past two years, (with the support from the DFAT), UNSD, UNICEF and the WG have carried out regional workshops to meet the varied needs of data producers and users. With the exception of the regional UNSD workshop in Bangkok, the WG has been represented at all UNSD workshops, and has co-sponsored all regional UNICEF workshops.

UNSD Workshops on Disability Measurement and Statistics focusing on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 2020 Round of Population and Housing Censuses

  • Bangkok, Thailand (SE Asia)*
  • Bridgetown, Barbados (Caribbean)
  • Kampala, Uganda (Africa)
  • Muscat, Oman (Western Asia)
  • Santiago, Chile (Latin America)
  • Almaty, Kazakhstan (Central Asia)
  • *No WG representation

UNICEF Workshops on Disability Measurement with a focus on Child Functioning and Disability

  • Tunis, Tunisia (National)
  • Geneva, Switzerland (Central Asia)
  • Westchester, NY (Latin America)
  • Westchester, NY (SE Asia+)
  • Dakar, Senegal (Africa)

WG Workshops on Disability Measurement with a focus on the Implementation of WG tools in National Statistical Systems

  • Nadi, Fiji (South Pacific)
  • Casablanca, Morocco (Western Asia)
  • Rome, Italy (non-regional)
  • Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago (Caribbean)
  • Mexico City, Mexico (Latin America)
  • Bangkok, Thailand (SE Asia and Pacific)
  • Africa (planned June 2018)
  • Central Asia (planned 2018)

The discussion and interaction between the workshop participants are highly encouraged in the WG Workshops on Disability Measurement. The workshop topics include:

  • A Brief History of Disability Measurement in Official Statistics & Introduction to the WG and that WG Tools
  • Collecting Disability Data: Best Practices for Question Wording, Translation and Implementation
  • Measuring Disability in Children: The WG/UNICEF Module on Child Functioning
  • Data Production and Analysis Using the WG Tools
  • The Importance & Feasibility of Disaggregation by Disability: Monitoring the SDGs and UNCRPD
  • Measuring the Environment and Participation: Inclusive Education and Employment

One of the major outcomes of the workshop that took place in Western Asia was the development of a Regional Guidebook to Improve Disability Data Collection and Analysis in the Arab countries (https://www.unescwa.org/sites/www.unescwa.org/files/page_attachments/wg-escwa_guidbook_disability_stat_8may18_final.pdf). The WG is hopeful that this document will serve a template the can be followed by other regions.

Country Activities

The WG continues to monitor the collection of disability data internationally, and annually requests detailed information from member countries covering survey periodicity, sample size and frame, mode of data collection, language(s) used, and exact question wording along with response options. Annual reports were completed by 61 countries. To date, 78 countries have indicated that the WG short set (or some variant) was included in a previous or most recent census, national surveys, disability modules or pre-tests. In addition, 18 countries have indicated that the extended set (or a subset) has as a module on a national survey or as part of a disability survey.

Other sessions included presentations from representatives from Australia and New Zealand focusing on the measurement of disability in their respective countries. Representatives from Cambodia, Thailand, United States, Vietnam, Handicap International, Nossal Institute for Global Health (University of Mebourne), and University College Dublin provided presentations on the use of the WG questions in surveys and projects conducted by their respective organizations. The copies of the presentations are available on the WG's website: http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/meetings/past-meetings/seventeenth/

Key agreements of WG-17 and next steps:

One of the key outcomes of the meeting was the announcement of a joint statement issued by the Washington Group and United Nations Statistics Division reaffirming the commitment of both groups to collaborate closely and effectively to achieve further improvements in disability statistics. Copy of the statement is available on the WG's website: http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/WG-UNSD-Joint-Statement.pdf

The WG also agreed to its work plan for 2018. Among other items, the plan delegates specific responsibilities to working groups that meet throughout the year (via email and telephone conferences). Next steps for the steering committee and work groups include:

  • Continue to develop guidance for the analysis and presentation of data collected using WG data collection tools focusing on more general analytic topics
  • Finalize and disseminate interviewer guidelines and manuals for implementation for WG/UNICEF Child Functioning Module
  • Continue the development of the module on inclusive education
    - Continue analysis of cognitive test data and propose revisions based on the test results
    - Further cognitive and field testing
    - Finalize the module
  • Continue the development of the disability module for use in labor force surveys
  • Continue work on the measurement of psychosocial functioning and develop new tools if needed
  • Address the feasibility of collecting information on disability through administrative data systems
    - New workgroup formally constituted at WG-17
    - Present terms of reference at WG-18
  • Continue regional workshops to facilitate the incorporation of the WG Short Set into Census and surveys for use in monitoring the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Governance issues

The 18th meeting, to be co-hosted by the National Italian Institute of Statistics (Istat), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Bank, will be held 6-9 November 2018 at IFAD headquarters just outside of Rome, Italy.

In keeping with UN guidelines, issues of gender bias and other potential sources of bias will be a consideration of all WG work.

Products

Proceedings from the meetings (presentations and papers), reports to the UN Statistical Commission, final meeting reports, and information on upcoming meetings can be accessed through the Washington Group website, currently hosted by the National Center for Health Statistics, U.S.A.
(http://www.washingtongroup-disability.com/).

Reporting to the UN Statistical Commission

Appendix: Past meetings/major outcomes

First meeting: Washington, D.C., 18-20 February 2002

Agreement was reached on the following: 1) it is important and possible to craft a short set/s of internationally comparable disability measures; 2) short and long set(s) of measures that are inter-related are needed; 3) the ICF model will be used as a framework in developing disability measures; and 4) census questions are the first priority.

Second meeting: Ottawa, 9-10 January 2003

A link was established between the purpose/s of a short measure on disability and aspects of measurement. A conceptual matrix was developed linking the purpose of a short disability measure with conceptual definitions and question characteristics. An empirical matrix was developed evaluating the characteristics of short set(s) of disability measures currently in use according to the dimensions of the conceptual matrix. Both matrices helped the WG to identify gaps in disability measurement.

Third meeting: Brussels, 19-20 February 2004

Since disability is multidimensional, it is not possible to ascertain the single "true" disabled population. Different purposes are related to different dimensions of disability or different conceptual components of disability models. Equalization of opportunities was selected as the purpose for which an internationally comparable short disability measure would be developed. A work group was designated to generate a draft set of questions related to this purpose. In addition, two other work groups were formed to propose methods for implementing the short set and to propose an approach for developing extended measurement sets related to the short set. Finally, a plan for WG governance was adopted.

Fourth meeting: Bangkok, 29 September - 1 October 2004

Agreement was reached on the following: Conceptual agreement on a draft set of questions for the general disability measure, but wording revisions were required prior to pre-testing; a new workgroup operating in conjunction with a consultant to develop six implementation protocols for pre-testing the short set of disability measures was formed; agreement to start development of the first extended measurement set was reached; and a new workgroup on methodological issues was formed.

Fifth meeting: Rio de Janeiro, 21-23 September 2005

Revisions were suggested for the short measurement set, the accompanying rationale, and the implementation protocols. A new work group was formed to plan and implement analyses of the WG pre-tests. All results pertaining to the six WG questions will be considered by the new work group including the WG sponsored pre-tests, the WHO/ESCAP test, and other testing activities.

Sixth meeting: Kampala, 10-13 October 2006

Based on the outcomes of the pre-tests, the WG endorsed the six question set for use in censuses. The set comprises questions on four core functional domains (seeing, hearing, walking, and cognition) as well as two additional domains desired by member countries (self-care and communication). The methodological work group and the data analysis work group merged to continue the detailed analysis of the pre-test data. The work group on extended measures was charged with drafting a position paper on the first extended set.

Seventh meeting: Dublin, 19-21 September 2007

The work group on the short set addressed the use of the short set as a screener and presented an alternative (optional) question on upper body function. The combined work group on data analysis and methodological issues provided further analyses of the pre-test data presented at the 6th meeting. A large part of the 7th meeting was dedicated to a discussion of work being done on the extended set of disability questions for surveys and survey modules. The extended set work group would coordinate its work with the work of the Budapest Initiative, Eurostat, and UN ESCAP.

Eighth meeting: Manila, 29-31 October 2008

Work on the extended set continued by expanding upon the set of domains already covered in the short set, and adding supplementary questions within domains (cause, age at onset, duration). Development of the extended set/s was to be done in collaboration with the Budapest Initiative, Eurostat, and UN ESCAP. Methodological issues were raised during the 8th meeting concerning the development of questions for children and institutionalized populations and the use of proxy respondents. WG representatives from Canada and France volunteered to look at the work being done in the areas of children and institutionalized populations.

Ninth meeting: Dar es Salaam, 7-9 October 2009

The primary focus of the 9th meeting was the presentation and discussion of results from the cognitive tests and preliminary field tests results in South-East Asia. Preliminary results from the field tests in two of the participating UN ESCAP countries (Maldives and Sri Lanka) were presented. The overall conclusion was that further analysis of the field test data was required before a final decision could be made regarding the extended set of questions. It was concluded that it was beyond the scope of the WG to address the issue of dealing with institutionalized populations at that time. Two workgroups were constituted to look more closely at the measurement of child disability and the development of a set of questions on environmental factors as they relate to the measurement of disability. It was strongly recommended by the delegates, particularly those from African countries, that projects similar to the one funded by UN ESCAP in the Asia and Pacific region, also be established in other regions.

Tenth meeting: Luxembourg, 3-5 November 2010

The 10th meeting of the Washington Group on Disability Statistics (WG) was held in conjunction with the Budapest Initiative Task Force on Measuring Health Status (BI). The primary focus of the meeting was to review results obtained from the 2010 round of cognitive and field testing of the extended set of disability questions that took place in Europe (Granada Group) and South-East Asia (UN ESCAP). In collaboration with the BI, a final version of a question set on health state (a subset of the extended set on functioning) was submitted to Eurostat for inclusion on the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS). It was determined that the workgroups were ready to begin developing question sets designed to measure disability for children and environmental factors.

Eleventh meeting: Southampton, 14-16 November 2011

The Washington Group began to monitor the use the WG Short Set in national data collections (censuses and surveys). Preliminary analyses of data provided by countries using the WG Short Set were presented. Preliminary findings from analyses of the WG extended set of questions on functioning using data obtained from the US National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) were also presented at the meeting.

The children's workgroup presented a well-received proposal for the development of the extended set for children including a conceptual framework and examples of how the framework could be operationalized. A formal collaboration was arranged between the Washington Group and UNICEF to work on the development of specific question modules designed to measure disability among children. The workgroup investigating environmental factors also presented their work consisting of a conceptual framework and related questions sets.

Twelfth meeting: Bangkok, 23-25 October 2012

Results from further analysis of data provided by countries using the WG Short Set in recent national data collections (censuses and surveys) were presented. Using data from the 2010 and 2011 NHIS, results using a mixed-method approach to assess validity and cross-subgroup comparability of the WG extended set of questions on functioning (ES-F) were presented. The workgroup investigating environmental factors and participation provide an update on their work including a review of the conceptual framework and related questions sets.

The workgroup (in collaboration with UNICEF) on the development of specific question modules designed to measure disability among children presented a review of the conceptual framework for question development and a proposed set of questions

Thirteenth meeting: Amman, 29-31 October 2013

Results from the continued analysis of data provided by countries using the WG Short Set in recent national data collections (censuses and surveys) and analyses using data from the 2010 and 2011 US NHIS addressing how best to combine information from several questions per domain on the WG extended set on functioning and develop standards for determination of cut-points were presented.

The WG/UNICEF workgroup on the development of specific question modules designed to measure disability among children presented the results of cognitive testing that was completed in Oman, Belize, India, Montenegro and USA and the revised Module on Child Functioning and Disability.

The presentation on whether and how issues related to mental health could be incorporated into the work of the WG resulted in the creation of a workgroup to further address this. Interest was also expressed in having the WG look into the use of data registers in the compilation of disability statistics.

Fourteenth meeting: Buenos Aires, 8-10 October 2014

Final results from the analysis of data provided by countries using the WG short set in recent national data collections (censuses and surveys) showed that although countries continue to report disparate disability prevalence rates; with some exceptions, those that use the WG as intended, using a cut-off of least one domain that is coded as a lot of difficulty or cannot do it at all, have reported disability prevalence rates that are comparable - in the range 7 - 10%.

Using 2010 and 2011 NHIS data, algorithms for combining multiple domain questions into single domain indicators of disability and developing standards for determination of cut-points using the WG extended set of questions on functioning (ES-F) were presented. A small workgroup was formed to finalize the analysis.

The WG/UNICEF workgroup on disability among children and inclusive education and the workgroup on mental health presented the work accomplished in the previous.

Two representatives from the Saudi Disability Registry Group (SDRG) presented on their experience developing a national disability registry. The delegates agreed that the workgroup should continue its efforts and provide a status update at the next meeting.

Fifteenth meeting: Copenhagen, Denmark 27-29 October 2015

Proposed guidelines for analyzing data obtained from the WG Extended Set of disability questions on Functioning were discussed. The delegates agreed on the completed domains and identified certain domains that required some slight modifications or further analysis. A small workgroup will finalize the analysis for the outstanding domains and present results at the next meeting.

Status reports were provided by the workgroups focusing on methodological issues concerning surveys: child disability, mental health, disability module for labor force surveys, and environmental factors & participation. The child disability workgroup presented findings from preliminary analyses of data collected in a Samoan Demographic and Health Survey. Further analysis of the Samoan data and data collected from additional field testing of the module will be used to inform the development of guidelines for producing statistics on children with disabilities. The workgroup also presented results from the cognitive tests of the module on inclusive education carried out in the United States. will be used to inform revisions to the module.

A review of the development of a proposed disability module intended for use in labor force surveys was provided. Cognitive testing of the module is scheduled to be conducted in the United States in 2016. Revisions will be made based on the cognitive test results; followed by cognitive and field testing in additional countries.

The workgroup investigating the development of measures specific to mental health presented the work accomplished in the previous year. The presentation included a review of the some of the issues related to developing measures specific to mental health. A status update will be provided at the next WG meeting.

The meeting also included a review of recent international activities in disability statistics including the use of outcome indicators for monitoring the UN CRPD and SDGs.

Sixteenth meeting: Pretoria, South Africa 7-9 December 2016

The meeting sessions included a review of the guidelines for analyzing data obtained using the WG Extended Set of disability questions on Functioning. The guidelines were finalized and approved by the delegates in attendance. The final version of the WG/UNICEF Child Functioning Module (CFM) was presented and formally adopted. Discussions included additional work in the development of the modules on barriers and facilitators to school participation (for children) and to employment (for adults). There was additional discussion of issues pertaining to measuring mental health. The next steps and future plans for the workgroups addressing these topics were discussed. The meeting also included special sessions devoted to the use of WG tools for disaggregation of the Sustainable Development Goals by disability status, and Disability Measurement in Africa.

Last updated 25 May 2018