Disability Health
Topic write up

MedlinePlus logoDiscover MedlinePlus

MedlinePlus is a service of the National Library of Medicine, the largest biomedical library in the world. Use Medlineplus.gov anywhere, anytime, on any device - for free - to discover high-quality health and wellness information that is reliable, easy to understand, and free of advertising, in both English and Spanish.

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Also discover MyHeathfinder.gov to Stay Active with a Disability: Quick Tips.

Discover NIH

NIH LogoThe National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the nation’s medical research agency — making important discoveries that improve health and save lives. NIH is made up of 27 Institutes and Centers, each with a specific research agenda, often focusing on particular diseases or body systems.

Disability Impacts All of Us Infographic
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The CDC Disability and Health Branch promotes health and full participation in society by people with disabilities across the lifespan. CDCs Milestone tracker app

If you are a parent or caregiver, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) provides free materials for download including an app to help track your child's developmental milestones and to find guidance for intervention.

Assistive Devices

A disability may affect what a person is able to physically or mentally do. However, mobility aids and assistive devices can make tasks easier and help people engage in daily activities whether at work, school, or home. The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Center for Limb Loss and MoBolity (CLiMB) is a research group focused on preserving and enhancing mobility in Veterans and others with foot and leg impairments or amputations. It currently is recruiting volunteers to participate in a 2-year research study to see if using a Fitbit pedometer and an online peer group changes how much people with a lower limb amputation walk. The Amputee Coalition, the nation's leading organization on limb loss, is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for amputees and their families, improving patient care, and preventing limb loss. The Limb Loss Resource Center is an excellent place to locate services, ask questions, and order publications in both English and Spanish.

Get Everyone Reading

The Next Chapter Book Club offers a unique community-based book club program for adolescents and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

Learn how to participate.


Blue book cover of El Deafo by Cece Bell

Author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her subsequent experiences with the Phonic Ear, a very powerful--and very awkward--hearing aid. The Phonic Ear gives Cece the ability to hear--sometimes things she shouldn't--but also isolates her from her classmates. She really just wants to fit in and find a true friend, someone who appreciates her as she is.

El Deafo | Cece Bell | Harry N Abrams Publisher | 2014 | 248 pages | ISBN: 978-1419712173 | Grade Level: 3-7 | WorldCat | Discussion Guide


Fighting for Yes book coverA picture book biography celebrating the life and work of disability rights activist and icon Judith Heumann, highlighting one of her landmark achievements—leading the historic 504 Sit-in in 1977.Fighting for Yes!: The Story of Disability Rights Activist Judith Heumann | Maryann Cocca-Leffler, Author and Vivien Mildenberger, Illustrator | Abrams Books | 2022 | ISBN: 978-1419755606 | Ages: 6-8 Grades: 1-3 | WorldCat

Resources for Teachers About Disability Awareness, Accessibility and Inclusion

Invisible Disabilities

Learning and reading disorders, as well as mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress, anxiety, and eating disorders, are disabilities not always readily seen. Recognizing and understanding hidden disabilities is important to Communicating With and About People With Disabilities.



Accessibility in Healthcare

Accessibility of doctors’ offices, clinics, and other health care providers is essential in providing medical care to people with disabilities. Due to barriers, individuals with disabilities are less likely to get routine preventative medical care than people without disabilities. Accessibility is not only legally required,* it is important medically so that minor problems can be detected and treated before turning into major and possibly life-threatening problems. - Access to Medical Care for Individuals with Mobility Disabilities | ADA.gov

It has been more than 30 years since the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was made law. Unfortunately, people with disabilities continue experiencing health care disparities - even in healthcare settings. - Iezzoni LI, Rao SR, Ressalam J, Bolcic-Jankovic D, Agaronnik ND, Lagu T, Pendo E, Campbell EG. US Physicians' Knowledge About The Americans With Disabilities Act And Accommodation Of Patients With Disability. Health Aff (Millwood). 2022 Jan;41(1):96-104. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2021.01136. PMID: 34982624; PMCID: PMC8740697.

*The U.S. Department of Justice and the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services are responsible for enforcing the ADA in health care settings.

Discover Inclusive Emergency Preparedness Resources 

Featured Books
Title: Being Heumann
Author Judith Heumann
Publisher Beacon Press
Year published 2020
Book image Being Heumann book cover
Title: Disability Visibility
Author Alice Wong, Editor
Publisher Vintage Books
Year published 2020
Book image Disability Visibility book cover
Title: Every Note Played
Author Lisa Genova
Publisher Scout Press
Year published 2018
Book image Every Note Played book cover
Title: Sitting Pretty
Author Rebekah Taussig
Publisher HarperOne
Year published 2020
Book image Sitting Pretty book cover
Title: Switched On
Author John Elder Robison
Publisher Spiegel & Grau
Year published 2016
Book image Switched On book cover
Title: Tough as They Come
Author Travis Mills
Publisher Convergent Books
Year published 2015
Book image Tough as They Come book cover

Terms of use: Network of the National Library of Medicine (NNLM) staff offer these health discussion resources for educational use. The materials included do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the author, publisher, or the sponsoring agencies of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).