Jul 12, 2014, 9:01 AM
News Code: 2720941
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SWO to conduct census on disabilities

Tehran, July 12, IRNA - State Welfare Organization plans to conduct a census on disabilities across the country.

Yahya Sokhangouei, the deputy head of SWO for rehabilitation affairs, said there are no official statistics on the number of individuals with disabilities in Iran. It is the first time such figures are being collected, he added.



Sokhangouei referred to global figures as the only source of Iran at present and said an estimated 15 percent of the country's population have been reported to suffer from a kind of disability.



"The outcome of the plan will be used for designing a disability prevention program based on the needs of each province," Saturday edition of Iran Daily quoted him as saying.



“There are 13,000 individuals with disabilities of the spinal cord, of whom 9,000 are under insurance coverage.”



The official said 50 special vans have been prepared to serve people with disabilities across the country.



Sokhangouei said SWO’s policies have changed with regard to disabled individuals to both reduce their costs of healthcare and meet their emotional needs.



Elaborating on the shift of SWO's policy from clinic-centered healthcare services to family-centered ones, he said earlier disabled individuals had to stay in special centers to receive rehabilitation services.



"SWO has now provided disabled individuals and their families to stay at their own home and receive free nursing services," he said.



Sokhangouei explained that family members of the disabled individuals could become a nurse after receiving special training.



"Disabled people living with their families have a higher morale and feel much better compared to those living in care homes," he said.



The official said families of those suffering from a severe disability that live in deprived areas will receive a monthly financial assistance of $33 as of July 21.



Sokhangouei said a fund of $11 million have been divided among provinces for supplying equipments such as wheelchairs for the disabled.



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