So, What is Participation … and Why Does it Matter in Disability Research?

Participation is defined broadly by the World Health Organization (WHO) as “involvement in a life situation”. The goal in understanding the impact of participation restriction is to maximize the ability of individuals with disabilities to participate in all areas of daily life, including learning and applying knowledge; general tasks and demands; communication; mobility; self-care; domestic life; interpersonal interactions and relationships; major life areas; and community, social and civic life. This concept was formalized by the WHO’s International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF), which identifies participation as an important aspect of health and health-related domains. Read more about the ICF here (español)

Measuring how impairments, limitations, and restrictions associated with health conditions affect the ability of individuals to participate in their daily lives is increasingly being recognized as an important outcome in disability and rehabilitation research. At ENACT, we believe that participation, in addition to improvements in function and physical activity, is a meaningful standard by which to measure successful rehabilitation and continue to work towards the ultimate goal of enhancing participation among individuals with rheumatic conditions.

ENACT research, training, and outreach programs are focused on impacting this broader understanding of participation in the lives of people with rheumatic conditions. Please explore our website to find out more about our activities!