Including People with Disabilities: Public Health Workforce Competencies

The competencies should be of interest to public health professionals in terms of including people with disabilities in core public health functions. More specifically, the competencies cover assessment, policy development, and assurance. This resource facilitates knowledge and practice skills through strategies, examples, and e-learning modules on the implementation of said compentencies in the daily work of the public health professional.

What are the competencies?

Expanding Inclusion: Exploring the Experiences of Ohio Students with Disabilities - Archive now available

Approximately one in five Ohio high school students reported having some kind of disability. Even so, very little is known about the experiences of these students and the ways in which their ability status impacts their life experiences. Even less is known about the ways in which ability status and race intersect to create unique challenges and opportunities for these students. The Ohio Disability & Health Program at The Ohio State University Nisonger Center and the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity presented a webinar on this topic, where we shared data, insights, and strategies related to the experiences of and expansion of opportunity for youth with disabilities.

ODHP Awarded “Reaching People with Disabilities through Healthy Communities” Grant

ODHP has been awarded funding from the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) to work with two local communities on improving disability inclusion in creating health communities. ODHP worked with the Ohio Department of Health’s Creating Healthy Communities (CHC) program to identify two communities who are current recipients of CHC funding, Adams and Marion counties, with whom to partner. Throughout the 1 ½ year project period, ODHP will work with these to counties to provide technical assistance on better reaching and serving people with disabilities to promote community health. The NACDD press release about this funding opportunity can be found here: NACDD Press Release: Disabilities and Health Communities Project

New Brief from ODHP, "The Double Burden: Health Disparities among People of Color Living with Disabilities"

Public health and health policy experts agree on the need to assess health disparities and healthcare inequities experienced by people of color and other historically disadvantaged groups.  However, these assessments often fail to include disability identifiers so that the health of members of historically disadvantaged groups who also have a disability can be understood. The Ohio Disability and Health Program (ODHP) has released an evidence-based policy brief, "The Double Burden: Health Disparities among People of Color Living with Disabilities", which explores the health disparity-amplifying phenomenon experienced by racial and ethnic minorities who have disabilities and discusses the need to collect disability data and/or identifiers, together with racial and ethnic data, to improve the health of all people. Download a PDF of this brief at the link above or from the ODHP Products page.

Disaster & Preparedness Training for People with Disabilities & their Caregivers

UC UCEDD, as part of the Ohio Disability and Health Program, in partnership with the American Red Cross, offers Disaster & Preparedness Training for People with Disabilities & Their Caregivers, a daylong training session to explore individual needs, regional resources, and emergency preparedness. This is a great opportunity for people with disabilities to learn about local hazards and how they can be prepared. Individuals are welcome to bring a family member or caregiver with them to the training. Participants also receive a FREE Red Cross Emergency Preparedness kit and “Ready Now” packet to create a personal preparedness plan.

So far more than 200 people have received this potentially life-saving training. Read more about this training on UC UCEDD's webpage: https://www.ucucedd.org/training-stories/people-disabilities-also-need-p...

To learn about upcoming training opportunities, please take a moment to like UC UCEDD and the Ohio Disability and Health Program on Facebook.

Disability and Health among Ohio Youth - 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey Factsheets

In 2013, disability identifiers were added to the Ohio Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), a statewide survey evaluating the health risk behaviors of Ohio high school students in grades 9 through 12. The Ohio Disability and Health Program analyzed the 2013 YRBS data and found that youth with disabilities face disparities in areas including rates of bullying, substance use, self-harm, and other health indicators. Two factsheets and one brochure were created to share these findings with policy makers, educators, healthcare providers, public health professionals, and the public. PDFs of each material can be downloaded below and will be permanently available from the ODHP Products page: http://nisonger.osu.edu/odhp/products

Disability and Health Among Ohio High School Students in 2013 – Youth Data Brief (PDF)

Disability and Bullying in Ohio – Youth Data Brief/Brochure (PDF)

Substance Use: Youth with Disabilities in Ohio – Youth Data Brief (PDF)

Hard copies of these materials are also available. Please contact Rosalind.Gjessing@osumc.edu if you are interested in distributing these materials and would like hard copies. 

For more information about the YRBS, please visit the Ohio Department of Health's "Ohio Youth Risk Behavior Survey" webpage


 1. A young boy is pictured with his brother, smiling; 2. A man is pictured walking in a mall with his service animal; 3. A young girl is pictured with her wheelchair; 4. A smiling youg woman; 5. A woman using American Sign Language (ASL).


Who is ODHP?

The Ohio Disability and Health Program (ODHP) is a grant-funded state program with the goals to promote health, improve emergency preparedness, and increase access to care for Ohioans with disabilities. With funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ODHP will:

  • Develop and enhance program infrastructure and capacity
  • Improve state level health surveillance and monitoring activities
  • Increase awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities to maximize health
  • Improve access to health care for people with disabilities
  • Improve emergency preparedness among people with disabilities
  • Effectively monitor and evaluate program activities

ODHP serves as a resource to the state and is well positioned to provide Technical Assistance related to disability and health for businesses, organizations, and people with disabilities in Ohio.

ODHP is a partnership amongst the Ohio Department of Health (ODH), the two Ohio UCEDDs (University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disability) at the Ohio State University Nisonger Center and the University of Cincinnati (UC UCEDD), and the Ohio Colleges of Medicine Government Resource Center (GRC). Another key collaborator for this program is the disability community; a Disability Community Planning Group (DCPG) has been formed to guide and assist in program activities.

Click here for the Emergency Management Be-Prepared Kit!

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