Child disability in some countries of the Mena region: magnitude, characteristics, problems and attempts to alleviate consequences of impairments

Osman El Hasan Nour, King Saud University

Disability is considered the most important source of vulnerability among children, specially in developing countries due to shortage in health services, poor training of health service providers, lack of community education programs and limited rehabilitative services. Estimates for Egypt, Jordan and Yemen suggest that between 25 and 38% of all children between ages 0-14 years have some form of disability. (UNICEF, 2003). Disabled children in the MENA region are facing health, educational, social and psychological problems. Low health awareness is certainly not only a reason for not detecting disabilities early enough to achieve maximum rehabilitation, but is also one of the underlying factors for the high prevalence of the phenomenon. The proposed study will investigate the extent of the type of child disability, identify problems facing disabled children, examine programs and policies that address needs of disabled children in some countries of the MENA region.

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Presented in Session 146: Children health