A third of disabled people in Britain still find it difficult to access hospitals

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 13 December 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c7174
  1. Anne Gulland
  1. 1London

A major survey of adults in Great Britain with disabilities has found that many continue to have difficulty accessing hospitals and general practices.

The Life Opportunities Survey, carried out by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), compares the experiences of people with and without impairments across a range of areas, including education and training, employment, transport, leisure, social and cultural activities, and social contact. It defines an impairment as the “loss of physiological and psychological functions of the body such as loss of sight, hearing, mobility, or learning capacity.”

The survey chose a deliberately broad definition so as to include people with long term illnesses such as asthma and cancer. The survey, which the ONS says is its first to look at disability in terms of …

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