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Epidemiology, disability and physiatric practice

Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 58(1): 1-4

Epidemiology, disability and physiatric practice

Physiatrists are concerned with epidemiology more to explain distribution and determinants of disability and its frequency, severity, longevity and consequences to man. If the word disability is substituted for disease, the epidemiologic model becomes relevant to the everyday concerns of physiatric practice. Epidemiology applied to physiatric practice is the measurement of disability with regard to distribution and causation. Principles and methods of epidemiology must be stretched beyond study of epidemics of infectious disease and stretched further to encompass consequences of disability. Treatment and management of disability are heavily interactive and interdependent with environmental factors including social policy and the availability and allocation of scarce and expensive resources. It is important that these be subjects of scientific inquiry and that the results of such inquiry be the basis for justification of outcomes of rehabilitation efforts through demonstration of efficacy, efficiency and best choices of alternative treatment modes.

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Accession: 005375837

PMID: 137701

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