California Office of Disability and Health

California Department of Public Health, EPIC Branch, Office on Disability and Health

Project Objectives

With the Strategic Plan guiding the activities and purpose of the Office of Disability and Health, the objectives and activities for the current work plan 2007-2012 include:

  • Establishing a permanent location for ODH within the structure of the California Department of Public Health.
  • Improving health-related surveillance activities in California by ensuring that survey respondents with disabilities are identified as such and that survey procedures enable participation of people with all types of disabilities as respondents.
  • Analyzing and disseminating comprehensive and high-quality data on issues related to the health status of Californians with disabilities.
  • Integrating at least five critical disability issues into relevant programs within CDPH.
  • Identifying at least one joint project to promote the health of, and provide quality services to, people with disabilities (PWD) enrolled in Medi-Cal Managed Care Organizations.
  • Adopting and implementing a Health Risk Appraisal (HRA) at Medi-Cal or other Managed Care Organizations as a preventive intervention for promoting health and preventing secondary conditions for PWD.
  • Working with the Information Technology Services Division (ITSD) and the Internet Coordinators' Group (ICG) so that CDPH will have internet and intranet sites that incorporate universal accessibility.
  • Adopting model language for use in local general plans to create a safer environment for all pedestrians with disabilities.
  • Using, adapting, and further expanding the curriculum, Inclusion and Infusion of Disability Content in Nursing Education, developed by UCLA School of Nursing in at least four nursing education programs in California using a process that encourages and maximizes its formal adoption into nursing education programs.
  • Developing an oral health module for training nursing students to increase knowledge and skills to recognize oral diseases and provide oral health counseling for PWD.
  • Increasing the knowledge and comfort of oral health professionals in providing preventive and treatment services for people with disabilities through the delivery and evaluation of online and hands-on experience.

Project Synopsis

The Living Healthy with a Disability implementation project builds on the strategic plan created in 2005, Universal Livability: A Dream for Tomorrow, A Plan for Today, California 2005-10. In this capacity, ODH serves as a statewide catalyst using collaborative leadership to affect environmental and policy changes. ODH is committed to this vision and mission and continues to promote policies and interventions to improve the social and physical environments, prevent secondary conditions, and increase participation in health promotion opportunities for all Californians with disabilities. By promoting the health and quality of life and enhancing the physical and social environments of California's citizens with disabilities everyone can be healthy and have a good quality of life.

The strategic plan provides a blueprint for ODH, in partnership with people with disabilities and state and local agencies to change policies and organizational practices, collect better data, provide education and training, and increase access to preventive health care and health promotion opportunities. Within the current grant cycle (2007-2012) ODH in partnership with the Take Action Advisory Council will review and revise the strategic plan to meet the needs of the dynamic public health environment and the disability community. The current plan aims to create the structure, organizational coordination, and informed constituency necessary to implement a comprehensive program that all present and future work is based upon:

  • Goal 1: Infrastructure and Capacity Building at the State Level. Develop and implement State level policies and programs to address the primary and preventive health needs of people with disabilities.
  • Goal 2: Promote the Social Model of Disability Research. Ensure standardized disability measurements are on all relevant California public health-related data systems, conduct innovative research on health-related issues among the disability population, and widely disseminate data and research.
  • Goal 3: Health Care and Health Promotion Access. Improve access to California's health care and health promotion systems by applying the Social Model of Disability and creating change in the physical and social environments.
  • Goal 4: Community Outreach and Education. Improve access to health care and health promotion by providing educational opportunities to people with disabilities and their circles of support on how to take charge of their health care and promotion decisions.

Key Partners

ODH collaborators include CDPH's Disability Advisory Committee, and programs such as Office of Civil Rights (OCR), Office of Women's Health, Emergency Preparedness Office, Tobacco Control Section, Medi-Cal Managed Care, Office of Multicultural Health, Licensing and Certification Division, Cancer Detection Section, Violence Prevention Unit, California Arthritis and Osteoporosis Prevention Program, California Center for Physical Activity, Healthy Transportation Network, Smart Growth Initiative, and California Healthy Cities.

Outside of CDPH, our partners include the Department of Rehabilitation, University of California at San Francisco (UCSF), University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), Cedars-Sinai Hospital, Traumatic Brain Injury Association, California Survey Research Group, Western University, Community Resources for Independent Living (CRIL), Breast Health Access for Women with Disabilities (BHAWD), State Independent Living Council (SILC), California Foundation for Independent Living (CFILC, Department of Aging, Department of Developmental Disabilities, and InfoSource.

Selected Presentations and Publications