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Mobility Device Use in the United States

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Mobility Device Use in the United States
by
H. Stephen Kaye, Ph.D.
Taewoon Kang, Ph.D.
Mitchell P. LaPlante, Ph.D.
Disability Statistics Center
Institute for Health and Aging
University of California
San Francisco, California
June 2000
National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research
U.S. Department of Education
Disability Statistics Report 14ii
Acknowledgments
For their participation in preparing this report, the authors are grateful to the staff of the Disability
Statistics Center; David Keer, project officer, and the staff of NIDRR; and Will Leber, graphic designer.
Disclaimer
This report was prepared under ED Grant #H133B980045. The views expressed herein are those of the
participants. No official endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education is intended or should be
inferred.
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To obtain additional printed copies of this publication, please contact the Disability Statistics Center or
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E-mail: distats@itsa.ucsf.edu
(415) 502-5210
Suggested Citation
Kaye, H. S., Kang, T. and LaPlante, M.P. (2000). Mobility Device Use in the United States. Disability
Statistics Report, (14). Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Education, National Institute on Disability
and Rehabilitation Research.
David Keer
U.S. Department of Education
OSERS/NIDRR
Switzer Building, Room 3431
Washington, D.C. 20202
http://www.ed.gov/offices/OSERS/NIDRR
E-mail: david_keer@ed.gov
(202) 205-5633
Mobility Device Use in the United States iii
LIST OF TEXT TABLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .iv
LIST OF FIGURES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .v
INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1
HIGHLIGHTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3
DATA SOURCE AND ACCURACY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5
POPULATION ESTIMATES AND SOCIODEMOGRAPHIC COMPARISONS . . . . .7
Age and Gender . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7
Race and Ethnicity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
Educational Attainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10
Employment and Labor Force Participation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10
Family Income . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11
Location and Setting of Residence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12
HEALTH AND DISABILITY STATUS
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13
Self-reported Health Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13
Hospitalization History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13
Perceived Disability Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13
Activity Limitation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15
Functional Limitation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .16
Activities of Daily Living . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21
HEALTH CONDITIONS AND IMPAIRMENTS ASSOCIATED WITH
MOBILITY DEVICE USE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25
All Ages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25
Leading Conditions by Age Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .27
ACCESSIBILITY FEATURES AND PROBLEMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31
Within and Around the Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31
Outside the Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32
Public Transportation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .33
HEALTH INSURANCE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .35
CONCLUSIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .37
REFERENCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .39
LIST OF DETAILED TABLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41
DETAILED TABLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43
CONTENTS
Disability Statistics Report 14iv
Table A. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices,
by age and device used . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8
Table B. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility
devices, by gender and device used . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
Table C. Labor force participation, employment, and unemployment,
by mobility device used, ages 18–64 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10
Table D. Leading conditions associated with mobility device use, all ages . . . . . . . . . .25
Table E. Leading conditions associated with wheelchair or scooter use, all ages . . . . .26
Table F. Leading conditions associated with cane use, all ages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26
Table G. Leading conditions associated with walker use, all ages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .27
Table H. Leading conditions associated with the use of crutches, all ages . . . . . . . . . .28
Table I. Leading conditions associated with mobility device use, ages 18–64 . . . . . . .28
Table J. Leading conditions associated with mobility device use,
ages 65 and over . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .28
Table K. Leading conditions associated with wheelchair or scooter use,
ages 18–64 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29
Table L. Leading conditions associated with wheelchair or scooter use,
ages 65 and over . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29
LIST OF TEXT TABLES
Mobility Device Use in the United States v
Figure 1. Proportion of population using mobility devices, by age and device . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7
Figure 2. Proportion of population using manual wheelchair vs. motorized device,
by age . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8
Figure 3. Proportion of population using mobility devices and wheelchairs,
by age and gender . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
Figure 4. Proportion of population using mobility devices, by educational attainment . . . . . . .10
Figure 5. Proportion of population using various mobility devices, by family income . . . . . . . .11
Figure 6. Proportion of population using manual wheelchair vs. motorized device,
by family income . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12
Figure 7. Poverty rate of mobility device users and non-users, by age group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12
Figure 8. Health status of mobility device users and non-users, by age and device . . . . . . . . . .14
Figure 9. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with self-
or other-perceived disability, by age and device . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15
Figure 10. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users limited in activity,
by age and device . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17
Figure 11. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with functional limitations,
by degree of limitation and device, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18
Figure 12. Proportion of mobility device users with functional limitations,
by degree and type of limitation, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18
Figure 13. Proportion of wheelchair users with functional limitations,
by degree and type of limitation, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19
Figure 14. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with ADL limitations,
by degree of limitation and device, ages 5 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20
Figure 15. Proportion of mobility device users with ADL limitations,
by degree and type of limitation, ages 5 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21
Figure 16. Proportion of wheelchair users with ADL limitations,
by degree and type of limitation, ages 5 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21
Figure 17. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with IADL limitations,
by degree of limitation and device, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22
Figure 18. Proportion of mobility device users with IADL limitations,
by degree and type of limitation, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22
Figure 19. Proportion of wheelchair users with IADL limitations,
by degree and type of limitation, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23
Figure 20. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with home
accessibility features, by type of feature and device, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . .31
Figure 21. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with home
accessibility difficulties, by type of difficulty and device, ages 18 and above . . . . . . .32
Figure 22. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users experiencing public
transportation difficulties, by type of difficulty and device, ages 18 and above . . . . . .33
Figure 23. Health insurance coverage of mobility device users, by age and type of coverage . . .35
Figure 24. Health insurance coverage of wheelchair users, by age and type of coverage . . . . . . .36
LIST OF FIGURES
Disability Statistics Report 14vi
Mobility Device Use in the United States 1
Assistive devices––such as wheelchairs, scooters, canes, crutches, and
walkers––are effective ways to alleviate the impact of mobility limitations for
many people, allowing improved ambulation and independence. Because the
U.S. population is aging, the use of assistive devices by people with mobility
impairments is of increasing importance. Assistive technology may be
responsible for the observed reduction in the level of activity limitation at
older ages (Manton, Corder, and Stallard, 1993).
The use of mobility devices has grown in recent years (LaPlante,
Hendershot, and Moss, 1992), with the populations using wheelchairs and
walkers doubling from 1980 to 1990. Crutch and cane use also increased by 14
percent and 53 percent, respectively, over this period. Growth in the usage of
these devices continued from 1990 to 1994 (Russell, Hendershot, LeClere,
Howie, and Adler, 1997), far exceeding what could be attributed to the aging
of the population. It is likely that improved survival of trauma patients has
also contributed to the growth in mobility device use. However, significant
improvements in the design of mobility devices, both in function and image,
have also fueled this growth. While financing may have become more avail-
able, it remains the case that about half of people or their families pay for
devices solely on their own. The unmet need for devices is substantial, with
the primary barrier being that people simply cannot afford to purchase them.
Although mobility device users represent only a relatively small minori-
ty of the population with disabilities, their importance transcends their num-
bers. Mobility devices, especially wheelchairs, are highly visible signs of dis-
ability; they have even become symbols in themselves of the concept of dis-
ability. Understanding the magnitude and characteristics of the population
using these assistive technologies is therefore of particular importance.
For mobility devices to be used effectively, the environments in which
they are used must be accessible. Yet, there is little data on the extent of
accessibility barriers faced by people who use these devices.
This report focuses on the population using devices, providing a detailed
profile of their demographic characteristics; health and disability status,
including diagnoses and impairments, physical functioning, and activities of
daily living; and health insurance status. More significantly, the report
addresses the accessibility of mobility device users’ homes and larger envi-
ronments, demonstrating that improvements in physical accessibility remain
a priority for millions of mobility device users who still experience
accessibility barriers.
INTRODUCTION
Disability Statistics Report 142
Mobility Device Use in the United States 3
Just over 6.8 million community-resident Americans use assistive devices
to help them with mobility. This group comprises 1.7 million wheelchair or
scooter riders and 6.1 million users of other mobility devices, such as canes,
crutches, and walkers.
High levels of mobility device use are observed among African Americans and
Native Americans. Asians and Pacific Islanders are the racial group with the
lowest device use.
Less than one-fifth of working-age wheelchair and walker users are employed;
the employment rate for crutch users is more than twice as high.
More than four-tenths of mobility device users are unable to perform their
major activity.
Nearly all wheelchair users report trouble walking, and more than three-
quarters are unable to walk a quarter of a mile.
Almost one-third of mobility device users need assistance from another
person in one or more of the Activities of Daily Living (ADL), compared to
less than 1 percent of non-users.
Two-thirds of mobility device users have limitations in one or more of the
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL).
Osteoarthritis is by far the most prevalent condition associated with mobility
device use, affecting 1.2 million mobility device users as the primary cause
of disability.
Stroke and osteoarthritis are the two most prevalent primary conditions
among wheelchair and scooter users.
About half of wheelchair users must use steps to enter or exit their homes. A
similar fraction report having difficulty entering or leaving the home.
Four-fifths of wheelchair users report that their local public transportation
system is difficult to use or to get to.
Among children who use wheelchairs, almost six-tenths are covered under
Medicaid. Among working-age wheelchair users, four-tenths are covered
under Medicare and three-tenths under Medicaid.
HIGHLIGHTS
Disability Statistics Report 144
Mobility Device Use in the United States 5
The National Health Interview Survey (NHIS)
is a nationally representative household survey
conducted annually by the Census Bureau for the
National Center for Health Statistics, part of the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Respondents to the 1994 and 1995 NHIS also took
part in two supplemental surveys, known collec-
tively as the National Health Interview Survey on
Disability (NHIS-D). Developed and funded by a
consortium of federal agencies and the Robert
Wood Johnson Foundation, the NHIS-D was
designed to gather detailed data on the U.S. com-
munity-resident population with disabilities
(National Center for Health Statistics, 1998).
In Phase I of the NHIS-D, which was adminis-
tered at the same time as the NHIS core, 202,560
persons were screened for any indication of disabil-
ity, using an extensive set of criteria including func-
tional limitation, specific disabling diagnoses, per-
ception of disability, and use of disability-related
services. A complex set of eligibility criteria was
used to identify a sample of persons who fell with-
in one or more of several conceptual or program-
matic definitions of disability; these persons were to
be interviewed again at a later date as part of the
second phase of the NHIS-D.
The Phase II questionnaire, known as the
Disability Followback Survey (DFS), contained
detailed questions on employment, use of services,
benefits, transportation, personal assistance needs,
housing characteristics, environmental barriers,
and participation in social activities. Data collection
began in September 1994 and concluded in April
1997, with interviews taking place between 7 and 26
months following the Phase I interview (median lag
between interviews was 13.6 months). The Phase II
sample numbers 32,788 persons.
Questions on mobility device use were asked in
both phases of the NHIS-D. The bulk of the statis-
tics in this report (those in Tables 1–10 and 14, all of
the text tables, and Figures 1–20 and 23–24) are
based on the authors’ tabulations of the Phase I
data. Data from the NHIS core were also used in
these tabulations, and the NHIS Family Resources
Supplement is the source of the health insurance
data in Table 14 and Figures 23–24.
Statistics on accessibility features and problems
(Tables 11–13 and Figures 21–22) are based on tabu-
lations of data from Phase II, the Disability
Followback Survey. In these tables, the responses to
the mobility device questions from Phase II have
been used to establish the relevant populations.
The vast majority (96 percent) of those identi-
fied in Phase I as mobility device users were select-
ed for the Phase II sample. All long-term wheel-
chair, scooter, walker, and crutch users were auto-
matically deemed eligible to participate in the DFS
(device use expected to last at least one year from
the date of the Phase I interview); respondents with
one or more severe (or two or more moderate)
mobility-related functional limitations were also
selected. As a result, nearly all (99 percent) of the
Phase I wheelchair and scooter users were eligible
for Phase II, as were 98 percent of walker users.
Thus, no significant biases are expected in the DFS
analysis due to the selection criteria, except for a
possible under-representation of some short-term
device users.
It is important to note that residents of institu-
tions, such as nursing homes, prisons, and larger
residential facilities for persons with mental or
physical disabilities, are not sampled in the NHIS.
Thus, statistics presented in this report represent
only the non-institutional, community-resident
population. A small number of respondents moved
into institutions during the months between the
Phase I and II interviews; although these people
have been included in the DFS, the sample essen-
tially remains representative of the non-institution-
al population only.
Because the estimates in this report are based
on a sample of the population, they are subject to
sampling error. All sampling errors have been cal-
culated directly using SUDAAN, which takes into
account the complex design of the survey. In the
data tables, estimates with low statistical reliability
(standard error greater than 30 percent of the esti-
mate) are flagged with an asterisk. All comparisons
mentioned in the text have been tested for statistical
significance, and, unless otherwise stated, are sig-
nificant at the 95 percent confidence level or greater
(p.05).
DATA SOURCE AND ACCURACY
Disability Statistics Report 146
Mobility Device Use in the United States 7
Just over 6.8 million Americans living outside
of institutions use assistive devices to help them
with mobility. This group, which amounts to 2.6
percent of the non-institutional population, com-
prises 1.7 million wheelchair or scooter riders (0.6
percent of the population) and 6.1 million (2.4 per-
cent of the population) users of other mobility
devices, such as canes, crutches, and walkers (see
Table 1). Canes are by far the most widely used
mobility devices: 4.8 million Americans use them,
or 70 percent of mobility device users.1Walker use
is reported by 1.8 million persons and crutches are
used by 566,000 persons.2
Of the 1.7 million wheelchair/scooter users,
the vast majority (90 percent, or 1.5 million per-
sons) use manual wheelchairs. Only 155,000 com-
munity-resident Americans use electrically pow-
ered wheelchairs, and only 142,000 use scooters.
Some 291,000 persons use either (or both) of these
motorized devices.
Tables 1 through 4 present prevalence esti-
mates of mobility device use broken down by the
demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of
device users. In Table 1, basic sociodemographic
and economic breakdowns are provided for all
devices, with separate prevalences for manual
wheelchairs, electric wheelchairs, and scooters,
and for all three devices combined. Separate
prevalence estimates are also provided for cane,
crutch, and walker use, as well as for those three
devices combined. Tables 2 through 4 provide
more extensive sociodemographic and economic
data, but device use is broken down less finely:
wheelchairs (manual, electric, or both), scooters,
canes, crutches, walkers, and any of the above.
Age and Gender
As illustrated in Figure 1, the proportion of
the population using mobility devices increases
sharply with age. While only 0.2 percent of children
under age 18 use any kind of mobility device, that
proportion increases seven-
fold, to 1.5 percent, among
those of working age (see
Table A). Among the elder-
ly, the 14.0 percent overall
rate of mobility device use
is almost a factor of 10 times
that of working-age adults.
Just under 40 percent of per-
sons aged 85 or over use
mobility devices.
Cane use is especially
prevalent among the elder-
ly, at 10.2 percent of the
population aged 65 or over.
Some 4.6 percent of elderly
persons use walkers, and
3.0 percent use wheelchairs
or scooters. In all, nearly
two-thirds (64.0 percent) of
mobility device use is by
POPULATION ESTIMATES AND SOCIODEMOGRAPHIC COMPARISONS
1The mobility device question in the NHIS-D Phase I asks whether anyone in the family uses any in a list of devices “to get around.”
Without any contextual reference to mobility impairment, some blind people using white canes reported themselves as cane users.
While it could be argued that a white cane is indeed a mobility device, the authors of this report chose not to broaden the scope of
the analysis beyond persons with specifically mobility-related impairments. Thus, respondents identified as using white canes, as
ascertained by a question asked only about persons with visual impairments, have not been counted as cane users, even when the
interviewer was told that they use a cane “to get around.” The population estimate of 4,755,000 cane users would have been
increased by 75,000 to 4,830,000 if white cane use had not been excluded.
2 The NHIS-D Phase I questionnaire also asks about the use of medically prescribed shoes, but these have not been included as mobil-
ity devices for the purposes of this report.
Figure 1.
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
Under 18 18-64 65-69 70-74 75-84 85 and
over
Age group
Any
Cane
Walker
Wheelchair/scooter
Crutches
Percent
Figure 1. Proportion of population using mobility devices, by age and device.
Disability Statistics Report 148
persons aged 65 or over. Over three-quarters (78.1
percent) of walker users and just over two-thirds
(67.3 percent) of cane users are elderly, as are 55.6
percent of wheelchair/scooter users. The vast
majority (72.6 percent) of crutch users, however, are
non-elderly.
Among working-age adults, canes and wheel-
chairs are the most prevalent mobility devices,
used by 1.0 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively, of
the population aged 18–64. Among youth, wheel-
chairs are the most prevalent, at 0.1 percent of the
population.
It is interesting to note that, although the pro-
portion of the population
using wheelchairs or scoot-
ers increases dramatically
with age, the increase is far
more pronounced for man-
ual wheelchairs than for
motorized devices. As
shown in Figure 2, the rate
of manual wheelchair use
among the elderly (2.76 per-
cent) is nearly 8 times that
for working-age adults (0.35
percent). But the rate for
motorized device use (elec-
tric wheelchair or scooter)
among the elderly (0.35 per-
cent) is only 3.5 times that
for working-age adults (0.10
percent). In fact, a substan-
tial majority (62.2 percent)
of motorized device users
are non-elderly, and more than two-thirds (69.7 per-
cent) of electric wheelchair users are non-elderly.
As Table B shows, a majority (58.5 percent) of
mobility device users are female, with 3.0 percent of
the total female population using one or more of
these devices, compared to 2.2 percent of males.
Since mobility device use is much more prevalent
among the older age groups, and since women have
greater longevity than men, it is not surprising that
more women than men must rely on assistive
devices to help with mobility. The female majority
holds among wheelchair/scooter users (58.8 per-
cent), cane users (57.6 percent), and especially
All Persons
Under 18 18–64 65 and over
Number Proportion Number Proportion Number Proportion Number Proportion
(1000s) (percent) (1000s) (percent) (1000s) (percent) (1000s) (percent)
Any mobility device 6,821 2.62 145 0.21 2,310 1.45 4,366 13.97
Wheelchair or scooter 1,679 0.64 88 0.12 658 0.41 933 2.99
Wheelchair 1,599 0.61 88 0.12 614 0.39 897 2.87
Manual wheelchair 1,503 0.58 79 0.11 560 0.35 864 2.76
Electric wheelchair 155 0.06 18 0.02 90 0.06 47 0.15
Scooter 142 0.05 0 0.00 78 0.05 64 0.21
Other mobility device 6,126 2.35 73 0.10 1,987 1.25 4,065 13.01
Cane 4,755 1.82 19 * 0.03 1,535 0.96 3,200 10.24
Crutches 566 0.22 36 0.05 375 0.24 155 0.50
Walker 1,820 0.70 27 0.04 373 0.23 1,421 4.55
*Standard error exceeds 30 percent of the estimate.
Table A. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by age and device used.
0.0
0.5
1.0
1.5
2.0
2.5
3.0
Manual wheelchair
0.11
0.35
2.76
Electric chair/scooter
0.02
0.10
0.35
Under 18
18-64
65 and over
Percent
Figure 2. Proportion of population using manual wheelchair vs. motorized
device, by age.
Mobility Device Use in the United States 9
among walker users (72.1 percent), with women
outnumbering men by more than 2 to 1. Only
among users of crutches (42.0 percent female) are
men a significant majority.
When prevalence rates are stratified by age,
gender differences in mobility device use become
less pronounced (see Figure 3 and Table 2). Among
working-age adults, the proportion of men using
mobility devices is, in fact, somewhat greater than
that for women (1.6 vs. 1.3 percent). Among the
elderly, women are more likely to use mobility
devices than men (15.8 vs. 11.5 percent). Wheelchair
use is about the same for working-age men and
women (at 0.4 percent of the population for each
group), but elderly women are more likely to use
wheelchairs than men (3.2 vs. 2.4 percent of the
population).
Race and Ethnicity
Mobility device use varies by as much as a fac-
tor of 3 among racial groups (Table 2). High levels
of mobility device use are observed among African
Americans, at 3.1 percent of that population, and
among Native Americans, at 3.4 percent.3The rate
of mobility device use among
whites is 2.6 percent. Asians
and Pacific Islanders are the
racial group with the lowest
device use, at 1.0 percent of
that population.
Ethnicity is also a signifi-
cant factor. Persons of
Hispanic origin are less likely
to use mobility devices than
those not of Hispanic origin
(1.5 vs. 2.8 percent).
Different age distribu-
tions among the racial and
ethnic groups may explain
some of the variation. But
even when only working-age
persons are considered
(Table 3), mobility device use
remains highest for Native
Americans (3.8 percent of
that population) and lowest
All Persons Males Females
Number Proportion Number Proportion Number Proportion Percent
(1000s) (percent) (1000s) (percent) (1000s) (percent) female
Any mobility device 6,821 2.62 2,832 2.23 3,989 2.98 58.48
Wheelchair or scooter 1,679 0.64 692 0.54 987 0.74 58.78
Wheelchair 1,599 0.61 658 0.52 941 0.70 58.85
Manual wheelchair 1,503 0.58 606 0.48 897 0.67 59.68
Electric wheelchair 155 0.06 84 0.07 71 0.05 45.81
Scooter 142 0.05 60 0.05 82 0.06 57.75
Other mobility device 6,126 2.35 2,502 1.97 3,624 2.71 59.16
Cane 4,755 1.82 2,014 1.59 2,741 2.05 57.64
Crutches 566 0.22 328 0.26 238 0.18 42.05
Walker 1,820 0.70 508 0.40 1,312 0.98 72.09
Table B. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by gender and device used.
3 The difference in rates between Native Americans and whites
is not statistically significant.
Figure 3.
0
10
20
30
40
50
Under 18 18-64 65-69 70-74 75-84 85 and
over
Age group
Any device, females
Any device, males
Wheelchair, females
Wheelchair, males
Figure 3. Proportion of population using mobility devices and wheelchairs,
by age and gender.
Percent
Disability Statistics Report 1410
for Asians and Pacific
Islanders (0.5 percent). The
differences in rates are less
dramatic among the elderly
(Table 4); still, in this group,
African Americans have a
significantly higher rate of
mobility device use than
whites (20.6 vs. 13.5 percent).
Educational Attainment
Prevalence of mobility
device use varies greatly
by educational attainment
(Figure 4), as do rates of dis-
ability overall (LaPlante and
Carlson, 1996). The rate of
mobility device use for per-
sons without a high school
education (8 years or less of education: 10.9 per-
cent) is 6 times that of those who have completed
college (16 years or more: 1.8 percent). High school
graduates with no college education (12 years of
education) rank in between, with 3.0 percent using
mobility devices.
Since elderly Americans on average have less
education than younger persons, the difference in
rates is partly explained by different age distribu-
tions among those with different levels of education.
Still, as shown in Figure 4, elderly persons with no
high school education have twice as high a rate of
mobility device use as those with college degrees
(19.7 vs. 10.0 percent). Among working-age adults,
3.6 percent of those with 8 years or less of education
use mobility devices, compared to 0.9 percent of
those with 16 or more years.
Employment and
Labor Force Participation
Employment, unemployment, and labor force
participation rates for working-age adults using
mobility devices are shown in Table C. Using data
from the NHIS core, we have classified a person as
employed if he or she worked at a job or business
during the two weeks prior to the interview,
including unpaid work in the family farm or busi-
ness but excluding work around the home. A per-
son is considered unemployed if he or she was on
layoff from a job or had no job but was actively
looking for work during the two weeks prior to
the interview. Anyone who is either employed
or unemployed is classified as a labor force
participant.
No Any
All mobility mobility Wheel-
persons device
device
chair Scooter Cane Crutches Walker
In labor force 78.8 79.6 27.4 20.4 20.5 25.5 44.5 17.2
Employed 75.4 76.2 24.3 17.4 17.9 * 22.9 38.4 14.5
Unemployed 3.4 3.4 3.0 2.9 1.3 * 2.5 6.1 2.4 *
Unemployment rate 4.3 4.3 11.1 14.4 6.3 * 10.0 13.8 14.1 *
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
The unemployment rate is the proportion of labor force participants who are unemployed.
Table C. Labor force participation, employment, and unemployment, by mobility device used,
ages 18–64.
(Percent of Population)
Figure 4.
0
5
10
15
20
25
8 or less 9–11 12 13–15 16 or more
Years of education
All ages
18–64
65 or over
Percent
Figure 4. Proportion of population using mobility devices,
by educational attainment.
Mobility Device Use in the United States 11
Mobility device users are much less likely to
be working than those who do not use mobility
devices: Only one-quarter (24.3 percent) of device
users are employed, compared to three-quarters
(76.2 percent) of those not using devices. Less than
one-fifth of wheelchair and walker users are
employed (17.4 and 14.5 percent, respectively).
Cane users are slightly more likely to be employed
(22.9 percent), and those using crutches are much
more likely to have jobs (38.4 percent).
Labor force participation rates follow a similar
pattern: 27.4 percent for mobility device users and
20.4 percent for wheelchair users, compared to
79.6 percent for non-users. Although the propor-
tion of mobility device users who are unemployed
(3.0 percent) is similar to that of those not using
devices (3.4 percent), the unemployment rate (the
fraction of labor force participants who are unem-
ployed) is much higher for device users (11.1 per-
cent vs. 4.3 percent). The unemployment rate for
wheelchair users is 14.4 percent.
Family Income
Since income is highly related to educational
attainment, it is not surprising that mobility device
use also varies greatly with family income. As
shown in Figure 5, overall mobility device use
decreases by more than a factor of 6 between per-
sons with family incomes less than $10,000 (6.8 per-
cent of whom are device users) and those with fam-
ily incomes greater than $35,000 (1.1 percent). Poor
persons are more likely to be users of all of the var-
ious mobility devices than more wealthy individu-
als. For example, a person whose family income is
less than $10,000 is 4.6 times as likely to be a wheel-
chair user as a person whose family income is
$35,000 or more. For walker users, the ratio is more
than 8 to 1.
Again, part of the variation in rates by family
income has to do with age, since retired people gen-
erally have less income than working-age people.
But the association between family income and
mobility device use holds up when the elderly and
working-age adults are considered separately (see
Tables 3 and 4). Just over 4.2 percent of working-age
adults with family incomes under $10,000 use
mobility devices, compared to 0.8 percent of those
with incomes of $35,000 or more, a ratio of 5.5 to 1.
Among the elderly, the 24.4 percent rate of mobility
device use for those with incomes under $10,000 is
2.5 times that of those with incomes of $35,000 or
more (9.6 percent).
It is interesting to note that, although device use
declines as income increases for each of the devices
considered in this report, the association is not near-
ly as strong for motorized devices as for other
devices. Electric wheelchairs and scooters are rela-
tively expensive to purchase, and it is likely that
poorer persons with mobility impairments may be
unable to afford them, using manual devices instead.
Figure 6 contrasts the steep decline of manual wheel-
chair use as income increases to the much more grad-
ual drop in the rate of motorized device use.
Also shown in Tables 2–4 are the rates of mobil-
ity device use for persons with family incomes both
above and below the pover-
ty line. Again, mobility
device use is greater for
those in poverty: 4.0 percent,
vs. 2.2 percent for those liv-
ing above the poverty line.
Among working-age adults,
the rates are 3.5 percent for
those below poverty and 1.2
percent for those above.
Among the elderly, 24.9 per-
cent of those in poverty use
mobility devices, compared
to 12.4 percent of those
above poverty.
As shown in Figure 7,
mobility device users are sig-
nificantly more likely to live
in poverty than non-users.
Overall, more than one-fifth
(21.3 percent) of mobility
Figure 5.
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
Under
$10,000
$10,000-
$14,999
$15,000-
$24,999
$25,000-
$34,999
$35,000 or
more
Family income
Any device
Cane
Walker
Wheelchair
Crutches
Scooter
Percent
Figure 5. Proportion of population using various mobility devices,
by family income.
Disability Statistics Report 1412
device users live in poverty, compared to 13.0 per-
cent of the remainder of the population. Among
working-age adults, mobility device users are 2.5
times as likely to live in poverty as those not using
devices: 27.5 percent vs. 10.8 percent. Elderly per-
sons using mobility devices live in poverty more
than twice as often as non-users: 17.6 percent vs. 8.4
percent.
Location and Setting of Residence
The rate of mobility device use is highest in
the South (2.8 percent) and lowest in the West (2.4
percent). Among elderly persons, the highest rates
of mobility device use are found in the South (14.7
percent) and West (14.6 percent) and the lowest
rates are found in the Northeast (12.7 percent).
Rates of mobility device use are greater in
rural areas (3.2 percent) than in metropolitan
areas (2.5 percent). In particular, residents of non-
farm rural areas have the highest rate of mobility
device use, at 3.3 percent. Some 15.2 percent of
elderly persons living in rural areas use mobility
devices, compared to 13.6 percent of those living
in metropolitan areas in general and 12.9 percent
of those living in suburbs.
Figure 7.
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
Any mobility device
21.3
27.5
17.6
No mobility device
13.0
10.8
8.4
All ages
18–64
65 and over
Percent
Figure 7. Poverty rate of mobility device users and non-users, by age group.
Figure 6.
0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
1.4
Under
$10,000
$10,000-
$14,999
$15,000-
$24,999
$25,000-
$34,999
$35,000 or
more
Family income
Manual wheelchair
Electric wheelchair or
scooter
Percent
Figure 6. Proportion of population using manual wheelchair vs. motorized
device, by family income.
No mobility device
Mobility Device Use in the United States 13
Tables 5 through 7 present breakdowns of the
population using mobility devices by health status,
hospitalization history, perceived disability status,
degree of activity limitation, degree and nature of
functional limitation, and degree and nature of lim-
itation in the activities of daily living (ADL) and
instrumental activities of daily living (IADL).
Mobility device users of all ages are included in
Table 5. In Tables 6 and 7, breakdowns are provided
for working-age and elderly adults, respectively.
Self-Reported Health Status
On average, people who use mobility devices
are in much poorer health than those who do not
use mobility devices. As Figure 8 shows,4a signifi-
cant majority (58.1 percent) of mobility device users
report that their health is fair or poor, compared to
only 8.6 percent of the population not using such
devices. While only 2.0 percent of the non-device-
using population report poor health status, 29.5
percent of those using mobility devices say they are
in poor health.
The worst health status is found among wheel-
chair, scooter, and walker users, with at least one-
third of each group reporting poor health (39.9 per-
cent for wheelchair users of any age, 36.4 percent
for scooter users, and 36.6 percent for walker users).
Nearly two-thirds of each group (65.4 percent of
wheelchair users, 63.1 percent of scooter users, and
65.1 percent of walker users) are in either fair or
poor health. Only among users of crutches do a
majority (54.7 percent) report their health status as
good to excellent.
Among the working-age population, an even
greater fraction of mobility device users report poor
health (35.7 percent of those aged 18–64, compared
to 2.2 percent of those not using mobility devices).
Fair or poor health status is reported by 62.5 percent
of working-age device users, compared to only 8.9
percent of non-users. Walker users are in especially
poor health: nearly half (47.3 percent) report their
health status as poor and nearly three-quarters (73.3
percent) report either fair or poor health. Scooter
and cane users also report poor health quite often,
39.8 and 39.5 percent of the time, respectively.
Among the elderly, the gap in health status
between device users and non-users is less pro-
nounced. Some 56.8 percent of device users aged 65
and above report fair or poor health, compared to
22.6 percent of non-users. Just over one-quarter
(27.0 percent) report poor health, compared to 5.8
percent of those elderly persons not using mobility
devices. It is worth noting that, among the elderly,
the variation in health status according to the spe-
cific device used follows a different pattern from
that among the non-elderly. Elderly persons using
wheelchairs report significantly worse health than
users of other devices, with 45.3 percent reporting
poor health and 72.5 percent reporting fair or poor
health. Walker, scooter, and crutch users report the
next-worst health status, with 34.4, 32.2, and 30.0
percent in poor health, respectively. Less than one-
quarter (23.4 percent) of elderly cane users are in
poor health.
Hospitalization History
Mobility device users are much more likely
than the rest of the population to have been recent-
ly hospitalized. Nearly one-third (32.7 percent) of
device users had been hospitalized in the year prior
to the interview, compared to 6.8 percent of non-
users. More than one-fifth (21.6 percent) of device
users had been discharged from the hospital in the
six months prior to the interview. These figures sug-
gest that a significant proportion of mobility device
users may be using these aids for a relatively short
period of time, while recovering from surgery,
injury, or disease. In particular, 44.5 percent of walk-
er users, 43.0 percent of wheelchair users, and 35.1
percent of crutch users had been hospitalized dur-
ing the 12 months prior to the interview.
Perceived Disability Status
Tables 5 through 7 present statistics on the pro-
portion of device users who answer either of the fol-
lowing questions in the affirmative: “Do you con-
sider yourself to have a disability?” or “Would
other people consider you to have a disability?” We
classify someone who answers either or both of
these questions in the affirmative as having a per-
ceived disability.
Two-thirds (66.7 percent) of mobility device
HEALTH AND DISABILITY STATUS
4 The very small fraction of persons listed in Tables 5–7 as hav-
ing “unknown” health status have been excluded from the
graph in Figure 8.
Disability Statistics Report 1414
Figure 8.
0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Proportion of population
Poor Fair Good Very good Excellent
ALL AGES
AGES 18–64
AGES 65 AND ABOVE
Device Used
Figure 8. Health status of mobility device users and non-users, by age and device.
Note: Figure excludes people with unknown health status.
Mobility Device Use in the United States 15
users have perceived disabilities (Figure 9). This
proportion is almost 12 times that of the remainder
of the population, only 5.8 percent of whom answer
either of the perceived disability questions in the
affirmative. Among users of specific devices, scoot-
er and wheelchair users are the most likely to have
perceived disabilities, with more than four-fifths of
each group (89.8 and 85.0 percent, respectively)
reporting that they consider themselves as having a
disability or that others would do so. The close
association between the use of these devices and
perceived disability is not surprising, given that
wheelchairs and scooters are both highly visible
and very closely associated in many people’s minds
with the notion of disability.
Nearly three-quarters (73.0 percent) of walker
users and just over two-thirds (67.6 percent) of
crutch users have perceived disabilities. Among
cane users, 63.1 percent answer one or both of the
perceived disability questions in the affirmative.
As Figure 9 shows, there are some significant
differences in reported disability according to age,
with elderly device users generally less likely to
view themselves as having disabilities. While three-
quarters (77.5 percent) of working-age mobility
device users have perceived disabilities, only 60.7
percent of elderly device users say that they have a
disability or that other people think they do. The
largest gap is among cane users: 78.2 percent of
working-age cane users have perceived disabilities,
compared to only 56.0 percent of elderly cane users.
Elderly persons may associate the need for a cane
merely with getting older, rather than assigning it
the label of disability. Walker use is also more asso-
ciated with perceived disability among working-
age adults (81.3 percent) than among the elderly
(70.7 percent).
Activity Limitation
Limitations in activity are often used to define
disability. In the NHIS core, a respondent’s major
activity is first identified, generally from a list of
activities that are expected for someone of the
respondent’s age, such as attending school, work-
ing, doing housework, or taking care of personal
needs. The respondent is then asked whether an
impairment or health problem keeps him or her
from performing that activity; those answering
affirmatively have been classified in Tables 5–7 as
“unable to do major activity.” If the answer is no,
the respondent is asked about any limitation in the
amount or kind of the major activity that he or she
can do because of an impairment or health problem;
persons with such limitations are classified as “only
limited in major activity” in Tables 5–7.
Respondents with no major activity limitation are
asked whether they are limited in any activities in
any way because of an impairment or health prob-
lem; if so, they are classified as “limited only in
other activity.”
The major activity for a child under 5 years of
age is assumed to be play. Attending school is
assumed to be the major activity for older children
Figure 9.
0
20
40
60
80
100
All ages
5.8
66.7
85.0
89.8
63.1
67.6
73.0
18–64
6.0
77.5
85.2
91.3
78.2
65.5
81.3
65 and above
12.9
60.7
84.5
88.0
56.0
73.4
70.7
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Percent
Figure 9. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with self- or other-perceived disability,
by age and device.
Disability Statistics Report 1416
(5–17 years of age). Adults aged 18–69 are asked
about work as their major activity, unless they indi-
cate that keeping house has been their primary
activity, in which case housework is substituted for
work. Persons aged 70 and over are asked about
self-care (ADL) and home-management activities
(IADL) as their major activity, regardless of any
other activities they may engage in.
The concept of major activity limitation is there-
fore highly dependent upon age. Activity limitation
as a whole, however, is less age dependent, since all
respondents not limited in their major activity are
also asked about non-major activities (“any activity
in any way”).
Figure 10 shows the proportion of mobility
device users and non-users who are limited in activ-
ity, whether unable to perform major activity, limit-
ed in amount or kind of major activity, or limited
only in some other activity. As one might expect,
mobility device users are much more likely to be
limited in activity than non-users, 84.1 percent vs.
13.0 percent of persons of any age. More than four-
tenths (43.2 percent) of mobility device users are
unable to perform their major activity, compared to
only 3.5 percent of persons not using devices. And
more than two-thirds (68.9 percent) of mobility
device users have some degree of limitation in their
major activity, vs. 8.6 percent of non-users.
Scooter and wheelchair users are the most like-
ly to have an activity limitation, with over nine-
tenths of both groups (96.3 and 93.0 percent of per-
sons of any age) reporting limitation. These groups
also have the highest rates of major activity limita-
tion, with 66.1 percent of wheelchair users unable
to perform their major activity and an additional
21.8 percent limited in the amount or kind of major
activity; for scooter users, the figures are 59.5 per-
cent unable and 27.1 percent limited in amount or
kind. Walker users have the next highest rates of
activity limitation: 89.0 percent overall, with 52.6
percent unable to perform their major activity and
25.9 percent limited in the amount or kind of major
activity. Although cane users are also rather likely
to be limited in activity (82.8 percent), only 38.0
percent are unable to perform their major activity.
Overall activity limitation rates are quite simi-
lar for the working-age population, but the
specifics are different. Because the major activity
for working-age adults is defined as either work or
housework, as opposed to the often less physically
demanding major activities of the elderly and of
children, most working-age mobility device users
who are limited in activity are limited in their
major activity, and most of those are unable to per-
form that activity.
Among persons aged 18–64, 89.6 percent of
mobility device users are limited in activity, com-
pared to 13.1 percent of those not using devices.
Nearly two-thirds (63.9 percent) of device users are
unable to perform their major activity, and an addi-
tional 20.3 percent are limited in the amount or kind
of major activity they can perform (the correspond-
ing figures for the remainder of the population are
4.3 and 5.0 percent, respectively). Wheelchair, scoot-
er, walker, and cane users all have activity limita-
tion rates greater than 90 percent. All of these
groups have high rates of inability to perform the
major activity, ranging from 66 to 78 percent.
Among elderly mobility device users, the vast
majority (85 percent) are over 69 years of age and
are therefore treated in the NHIS as if their major
activity were caring for themselves and managing
their homes (ADLs and IADLs; see below). Persons
unable to perform these activities are considered to
have fairly severe disabilities. It is therefore not
surprising that a significant majority of elderly
mobility device users consider themselves able to
perform their major activity. Thus, while 81.4 per-
cent of elderly mobility device users are limited in
activity (compared to 30.6 percent of those not
using mobility devices), only 33.0 percent are
unable to perform their major activity (vs. 6.6 per-
cent of non-users). Wheelchair users are signifi-
cantly more likely than other device users to be
unable to perform their major activity, with two-
thirds (66.2 percent) reporting this rather severe
level of limitation. At the other extreme, only one-
quarter (25.0 percent) of elderly cane users are
unable to perform their major activity.
Functional Limitation
Respondents to the NHIS-D who are at least 18
years of age are asked about any difficulty they
might have in eight areas of mobility-related func-
tion: lifting a ten-pound object (“lifting something
as heavy as 10 pounds, such as a bag of groceries”),
climbing a flight of stairs (“walking up 10 steps
without resting”), walking one-quarter mile
(“walking a quarter of a mile—about 3 city
blocks”), standing (“for about 20 minutes”), bend-
ing (“bending down from a standing position to
pick up an object from the floor, for example, a
shoe”), reaching (“reaching up or over the head or
reaching out as if to shake someone’s hand”),
grasping (“using fingers to grasp or handle some-
thing, such as picking up a glass from the table”),
and holding a pen or pencil. For each of these
Mobility Device Use in the United States 17
items, the degree of difficulty is ascertained (some
difficulty, a lot of difficulty, or completely unable).
We classified those with some or a lot of difficulty
as having “difficulty only” with the given function;
those answering “completely unable” are classified
as unable to perform the function.
To obtain a summary measure of functional
limitation, we estimated the population with any
degree of limitation in any of the eight functions in
Tables 5–7 (“Limited in 1 or more mobility-related
functions”), as well as those unable to perform at
least one of the eight functions (“Unable to perform
0 102030405060708090100
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Percent
Unable to
perform
major
activity
Limited in
amount or
kind of
major
activity
Limited only
in other
activity
ALL AGES
AGES 18–64
AGES 65 AND ABOVE
Device Used
Figure 10. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users limited in activity, by age and device.
Disability Statistics Report 1418
1 or more functions”). Figure 11 shows the propor-
tion of the population in both of those classifica-
tions for each of the mobility devices; also shown is
the proportion of the population able to perform all
of the functions but limited in at least one of them
(“Difficulty only”).
As one might expect, the vast majority (88.7
percent) of mobility device users experience mobil-
ity-related functional limitation. Mobility device
users are 8.5 times as likely to be limited in function
as persons who do not use mobility devices (10.4
percent of whom are limited in function). They are
25 times as likely to be unable to perform one or
more of the mobility-related functions as the
remainder of the population (54.3 vs. 2.2 percent).
At least four-fifths of the users of each of the
mobility devices are classified as having some
degree of functional limitation. Wheelchair, scoot-
er, and walker users have the highest likelihood of
limitation (96.2, 98.4, and 95.4 percent, respective-
Figure 12.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
25.8
38.7
34.0
37.3
38.0
19.3
18.9
14.6
Unable
25.7
26.7
43.1
27.5
22.7
6.9
2.7
2.9
Lifting 10
lbs.
Climbing
stairs
Walking
1/4 mile
Standing
20 mins.
Bending
down
Reaching
up or out
Grasping
Holding
pen
Figure 11.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
8.2
34.4
10.5
21.6
41.2
36.4
20.9
Inability in 1 or more functions
2.2
54.3
85.7
76.8
46.1
45.4
74.5
No
device
Any
device
Wheel-
chair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Percent
Percent
Figure 11. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with functional limitations,
by degree of limitation and device, ages 18 and above.
Figure 12. Proportion of mobility device users with functional limitations, by degree and type of
limitation, ages 18 and above.
Inability in 1 or more functions
Mobility Device Use in the United States 19
ly). Some 87.3 percent of cane users report func-
tional limitation, as do 81.8 percent of users of
crutches.
The variation in the degree of functional limi-
tation is much more pronounced. More than four-
fifths of wheelchair users (85.7 percent) are unable
to perform one or more of the eight functions,
compared to less than half (46.1 and 45.4 percent,
respectively) of cane and crutch users. Looked at
another way, only 14.3 percent of wheelchair users
are able to perform all of the eight mobility-relat-
ed functions, compared to more than half of cane
and crutch users. One-quarter (25.5 percent) of
walker users report being able to perform all of
the eight functions.
Figure 12 shows the proportion of the mobility
device–using population with limitations in each of
the eight functions. Device users are most likely to
be limited in walking, with more than three-quar-
ters (77.1 percent) having some degree of difficulty
with this function and more than four-tenths (43.1
percent) unable to walk one-quarter mile. In each of
the following functions, a majority of device users
report limitation: climbing stairs (65.4 percent have
trouble climbing a flight of stairs without resting),
standing for long periods of time (64.8 percent have
trouble standing for 20 minutes), bending down
(60.8 percent have trouble bending from a standing
position), or lifting (51.5 percent have trouble lifting
a ten-pound object).
Wheelchair users are more likely to have trou-
ble in every one of the eight functional limitations
than mobility device users overall. As shown in
Figure 13, more than nine-tenths (94.2 percent) of
wheelchair users report trouble walking, and more
than three-quarters (78.5 percent) are unable to
walk a quarter of a mile. Limitations in climbing,
standing, and bending are also reported more than
four-fifths of the time (88.4, 86.8, and 81.2 percent,
respectively), and inability to climb ten stairs with-
out resting, stand for 20 minutes, and bend down
from a standing position are reported more than
half the time (63.7, 61.0, and 55.4 percent). More
than two-thirds (71.3 percent) report some degree of
limitation in lifting ten-pound objects, and about
one-third report limitation in each of the two hand-
related activities measured: grasping objects (33.7
percent) and holding a pen or pencil (31.6 percent).
Activities of Daily Living
Respondents to the NHIS-D who are at least 5
years of age are asked about a set of six self-care
activities, known in the literature as Activities of
Daily Living (ADL): bathing or showering; dress-
ing; eating; getting in or out of bed or chairs (which
we label “transferring”); using the toilet, including
getting to the toilet (“toileting”); and getting around
inside the home. The following facts are ascertained
about each of these activities: whether the person
gets help from another person to perform the activ-
ity “because of a physical, mental, or emotional
Figure 13.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
23.0
24.7
15.7
25.8
25.8
22.2
24.7
22.6
Unable
48.3
63.7
78.5
61.0
55.4
15.0
9.1
9.0
Lifting 10
lbs.
Climbing
stairs
Walking
1/4 mile
Standing
20 mins.
Bending
down
Reaching
up or out
Grasping
Holding
pen
Percent
Figure 13. Proportion of wheelchair users with functional limitations, by degree and type of limitation,
ages 18 and above.
Disability Statistics Report 1420
problem”; whether the person needs to be remind-
ed to do the activity or to have someone close by
“because of a physical, mental, or emotional prob-
lem”; whether the person uses special equipment to
do the activity; and whether the person has difficul-
ty with the activity “because of a physical, mental,
or emotional problem.” If the person needs assis-
tance, reminding, supervision, or special equipment
to perform an ADL, it is assumed that the person
has difficulty, without the question being asked.
In Tables 5–7, we have classified those persons
getting help from another person, needing remind-
ing, and needing someone close by under “needs
assistance” with the activity in question. Persons
with any level of difficulty with an activity, includ-
ing those using special equipment, getting help, or
needing reminders or someone close by, are classi-
fied as having a limitation in the activity. For sum-
mary measures of ADL limitation, we estimated
the population with any level of limitation in any
of the ADLs and the population needing assistance
from another person (gets help, needs reminding,
or needs someone close by) in one or more of
the ADLs.
Figure 14 shows the proportion of mobility
device users who have ADL limitations (any level of
limitation in one or more ADLs), who need assis-
tance in one or more ADLs (“Needs help”), and
who have limitations but do not need assistance
(“Difficulty only”). Nearly half (47.2 percent) of
mobility device users have some degree of limita-
tion in at least one ADL, compared to only 1.1 per-
cent of persons who do not use mobility devices.
Almost one-third (30.9 percent) of device users
need assistance from another person in ADLs, com-
pared to only 0.7 percent of non-users. A mobility
device user is 44 times as likely to report an ADL
limitation as a person who does not use a mobility
device and 42 times as likely to need assistance
from another person in ADLs.
In fact, the 2.9 percent of Americans at least 5
years of age who use mobility devices constitute a
significant majority of those with ADL limitations.
Of the 5.7 million with ADL limitations, 56.2 per-
cent, or 3.2 million people, use mobility devices.
Of the 3.8 million needing personal assistance, 55.0
percent are mobility device users, or 2.1 million
persons.
Wheelchair users are the most limited in ADLs,
with four-fifths (80.2 percent) reporting some
degree of difficulty in at least one ADL and more
than three-fifths (62.7 percent) needing assistance in
at least one ADL. Walker and scooter users are also
very likely to be limited in ADLs, with 72.1 and 71.3
percent reporting limitation, respectively, and 50.0
and 37.3 percent reporting assistance needs. Least
likely to be limited in ADLs are cane users, of whom
37.8 are limited and only 22.0 percent need assis-
tance from another person.
Figure 15 shows the proportion of mobility
device users with limitations in specific ADLs.
Bathing is the activity most likely to present diffi-
culty to device users, with more than one-third (37.9
percent) reporting some degree of limitation in
Figure 14.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
0.4
16.3
17.5
34.0
15.8
24.3
22.1
Needs help
0.7
30.9
62.7
37.3
22.0
23.4
50.0
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Percent
Figure 14. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with ADL limitations, by degree of limitation
and device, ages 5 and above.
Needs help
Mobility Device Use in the United States 21
bathing. Bathing and dressing are the activities for
which mobility device users are most likely to need
assistance (26.7 and 20.7 percent, respectively), fol-
lowed by transferring at 17.0 percent. Only 7.7 per-
cent of mobility device users have difficulty eating.
Wheelchair users are more likely to report limi-
tation in each of the ADLs (Figure 16) than are
mobility device users overall. Again, bathing is the
activity most likely to present problems (72.0 per-
cent are limited in bathing). A majority of wheel-
chair users are limited in dressing (54.6 percent),
transferring (55.4 percent), toileting (52.6 percent),
and getting around inside the home (59.6 percent).
Again, eating is the ADL least likely to present
problems (23.3 percent limited).
Assistance is most often needed in bathing (58.4
percent of wheelchair users), dressing (50.0 per-
cent), and transferring (43.7 percent). More than
one-third of wheelchair users need help with get-
ting around inside (37.6 percent), and a similar pro-
portion need assistance in toileting (37.5 percent).
Wheelchair users are relatively unlikely to need
assistance with eating (20.1 percent).
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living
The Instrumental Activities of Daily Living
(IADL) are a set of everyday activities associated
Figure 15.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
11.2
3.9
1.5
8.8
9.5
13.9
Needs help
26.7
20.7
6.2
17.0
12.6
13.5
Bathing
Dressing
Eating
Transferring
Toileting
Getting
around inside
Figure 16.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
13.6
4.6
3.2
11.7
15.1
22.0
Needs help
58.4
50.0
20.1
43.7
37.5
37.6
Bathing
Dressing
Eating
Transferring
Toileting
Getting
around inside
Percent
Percent
Figure 15. Proportion of mobility device users with ADL limitations, by degree and type of limitation,
ages 5 and above.
Figure 16. Proportion of wheelchair users with ADL limitations, by degree and type of limitation,
ages 5 and above.
Needs help
Needs help
Disability Statistics Report 1422
with managing a home. The NHIS-D asks about
these IADLs for persons aged 18 or over: prepar-
ing meals, shopping (“for personal items, such as
toilet items or medicine”), managing money
(“such as keeping track of expenses or paying
bills”), using the telephone, doing heavy house-
work (“heavy work around the house like scrub-
bing floors, washing windows, and doing heavy
yard work”), and doing light housework (“light
work around the house like doing dishes,
straightening up, light cleaning, or taking out the
trash”). For each activity, the following informa-
tion is obtained: whether the person gets help or
supervision from another person in performing
the activity “because of a physical, mental, or
emotional problem” and whether the person has
difficulty performing the activity “because of a
physical, mental, or emotional problem.” Again,
difficulty is assumed if the person needs help or
supervision.
More than two-thirds (68.1 percent) of mobility
device users have one or more IADL limitations,
compared to only 5.5 percent of those not using
mobility devices (Figure 17). The vast majority of
those limited in IADLs need assistance in at least
one IADL (62.0 percent of mobility device users are
reported as getting help or supervision, compared
to 4.6 percent of non-users). Wheelchair, scooter,
and walker users are the most likely to have IADL
limitations, with more than four-fifths of each
group reporting limitation (86.4, 87.1, and 82.6 per-
cent, respectively) and more than three-quarters of
Figure 17.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
0.9
6.1
5.8
6.5
6.3
6.5
5.6
Needs help
4.6
62.0
80.6
80.6
57.2
55.7
77.0
No device
Any device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Figure 18.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
3.8
3.6
1.6
1.6
7.6
4.4
Needs help
22.4
36.3
15.6
7.4
58.4
29.7
Preparing
meals
Shopping
Managing
money
Using the
telephone
Heavy
housework
Light
housework
Percent
Percent
Figure 17. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with IADL limitations,
by degree of limitation and device,
ages 18 and above.
Figure 18. Proportion of mobility device users with IADL limitations, by degree and type
of limitation, ages 18 and above.
Needs help
Needs help
Mobility Device Use in the United States 23
each group needing help in IADLs (80.6, 80.6, and
77.0 percent). A majority of cane and crutch users
have IADL limitations (63.5 and 62.2 percent,
respectively), most of whom need assistance (57.2
and 55.7 percent of the users of those devices).
As shown in Figure 18, heavy housework is the
IADL in which mobility device users are most like-
ly to experience limitation, with two-thirds (66.0
percent) reporting some degree of limitation and
more than half (58.4 percent) needing help in this
activity. Device users are far less likely to report lim-
itation in the other IADLs. Shopping (39.9 percent),
light housework (34.1 percent), and preparing
meals (26.2 percent) are the only other IADLs in
which limitation affects one-quarter or more of
device users in general.
Wheelchair users (Figure 19) are very likely to
be limited in heavy housework: 85.1 percent are
limited to some degree and 76.0 percent need help
performing this IADL. Limitations in shopping and
light housework are reported by about two-thirds
of wheelchair users (69.4 and 65.4 percent, respec-
tively), and a substantial majority need help in
these activities (63.6 and 58.4 percent). A limitation
in preparing meals is also reported by a majority of
wheelchair users (56.3 percent); half (49.3 percent)
need help in this activity.
Overall, three-quarters (73.1 percent) of mobili-
ty device–using adults and nine-tenths (92.1 per-
cent) of wheelchair-using adults experience some
degree of limitation in at least one of the self-care or
home-management activities (ADLs or IADLs).
Some 65.9 percent of adults who use mobility
devices need assistance from another person in one
or more of the activities, as do 86.7 percent of adults
who use wheelchairs.
Figure 19.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Difficulty only
7.0
5.8
3.5
3.0
9.1
7.0
Needs help
49.3
63.6
31.9
18.3
76.0
58.4
Preparing
meals
Shopping
Managing
money
Using the
telephone
Heavy
housework
Light
housework
Percent
Figure 19. Proportion of wheelchair users with IADL limitations, by degree and type of limitation,
ages 18 and above.
Needs help
Disability Statistics Report 1424
Mobility Device Use in the United States 25
Tables 8 through 10 list the principal health
conditions and impairments associated with the
use of mobility devices. Because respondents to the
NHIS-D are not asked to specify the condition that
necessitates their use of a mobility device, it is not
possible to directly attribute a person’s device use
to a particular condition. Instead, the conditions
listed are those mentioned by respondents as the
main cause of their disability, defined in terms of
either functional or activity limitation, as described
below.
There are two sources of relevant condition
information available in the survey, one in the
NHIS-D and one in the NHIS core. The former is
obtained by asking those adult (18 years of age or
older) respondents who indicate that they have one
or more mobility-related functional limitations to
indicate the main cause of that limitation. The lat-
ter is obtained by asking all respondents limited in
any activity to specify all conditions that limit their
activity; they are then asked to identify the main
condition causing their activity limitation. In Tables
8–10, we have used the condition causing function-
al limitation whenever it is available (namely, for
adults with functional limitations that have been
captured in the survey); when no information
about the condition causing functional limitation is
available (for children and adults without identi-
fied functional limitations), the main condition
causing activity limitation has been used instead.
Conditions have been classified according to
the scheme developed in LaPlante and Carlson
(1996). We have listed the subset of specific condi-
tions, along with a few broader categories of condi-
tions, whose prevalence among mobility device
users is sufficient to yield statistically reliable pop-
ulation estimates for persons with that condition
using any mobility device. Because all condition
information is self-reported, and because inter-
viewers do not attempt to elucidate additional
details once a condition is stated, specific condi-
tions may tend to be undercounted in the survey in
favor of broader, catch-all categories. For example,
a person reporting merely “heart trouble” cannot
be classified as having a specific condition such as
angina or hypertensive disease, but instead would
be coded under the category “other forms of heart
disease.”
Table 8 shows the principal conditions associ-
ated with mobility device use for all ages; Table 9
shows the conditions for working-age adults (aged
18–64) and Table 10 shows conditions associated
with mobility device use among elderly persons.
All Ages
Table D ranks the leading ten conditions asso-
ciated with mobility device use among persons of
HEALTH CONDITIONS AND IMPAIRMENTS
ASSOCIATED WITH MOBILITY DEVICE USE
Table D. Leading conditions associated with mobility device use, all ages.
All conditions 6,321 100.00
1 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 1,189 18.81
2 Cerebrovascular disease 442 6.98
3 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 367 5.80
4 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 273 4.32
5 Intervertebral disc disorders 237 3.75
6 Senility without mention of psychosis 236 3.73
7 Other forms of heart disease 210 3.32
8 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 201 3.18
9 Orthopedic impairment of hip and/or pelvis 185 2.92
10 Chronic injuries or late effects of injuries 131 2.07
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Proportion of
device users (%)
Persons
(1000s)
Condition
Disability Statistics Report 1426
all ages. These conditions account for more than
half (54.9 percent) of mobility device use.
Osteoarthritis is by far the most prevalent condi-
tion, affecting 1.2 million mobility device users as
the primary cause of disability and accounting for
18.8 percent of mobility device use. Next are cere-
brovascular disease (affecting 442,000 persons) and
orthopedic impairments of the lower extremity
(367,000), followed by two conditions related to the
back: orthopedic impairments of the back or neck
(273,000), and intervertebral disc disorders (237,000
persons). These two back-related conditions, taken
together, are responsible for disability in 0.5 million
mobility device users.
Table E lists the top-ranked conditions associ-
ated with wheelchair or scooter use. Just under half
(49.3 percent) of wheelchair/scooter users specify
one of the ten listed conditions as their primary
cause of disability. Cerebrovascular disease (likely
to be reported as “stroke”), which affects 180,000
wheelchair/scooter users, and osteoarthritis,
affecting 170,000 persons, are the two most preva-
lent primary conditions among this group.
Although these conditions are commonly associat-
ed with aging, other highly prevalent conditions
are not: multiple sclerosis (82,000 persons), absence
or loss of lower extremity (60,000), paraplegia
(59,000), and orthopedic impairments of lower
extremity (59,000).
Because of the relatively small numbers of
Table F. Leading conditions associated with cane use, all ages.
All conditions 4,384 100.00
1 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 976 22.26
2 Cerebrovascular disease 294 6.70
3 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 270 6.17
4 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 226 5.16
5 Intervertebral disc disorders 218 4.97
6 Senility without mention of psychosis 172 3.92
7 Other forms of heart disease 152 3.46
8 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 142 3.23
9 Orthopedic impairment of hip and/or pelvis 132 3.00
10 Absence or loss of rib, bone, joint, or muscle of trunk 100 2.29
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Proportion of
device users (%)
Condition
Persons
(1000s)
Table E. Leading conditions associated with wheelchair or scooter use, all ages.
All conditions 1,629 100.00
1 Cerebrovascular disease 180 11.05
2 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 170 10.43
3 Multiple sclerosis 82 5.02
4 Absence or loss of lower extremity 60 3.68
5 Paraplegia (paralysis of both legs) 59 3.63
6 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 59 3.62
7 Other forms of heart disease 54 3.30
8 Cerebral palsy 51 3.11
9 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 49 3.00
10 Diabetes 39 2.40
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Persons
(1000s)
Condition
Proportion of
device users (%)
Mobility Device Use in the United States 27
people using electric wheelchairs and scooters, it is
not possible to present statistically reliable preva-
lence estimates of conditions associated specifical-
ly with the use of these two devices. It is possible,
however, to note broad differences among condi-
tions associated with the use of manual wheel-
chairs, electric wheelchairs, and scooters. While
manual wheelchair users are most likely to have
age-related diseases of the circulatory or muscu-
loskeletal system, electric wheelchair users are
most likely to have some form of paralysis, such as
quadriplegia, cerebral palsy, or paraplegia. These
forms of paralysis are not highly associated with
scooter use, however; instead, scooter users are
most likely to have diseases of the nervous system,
such as multiple sclerosis and amyotrophic lateral
sclerosis, or diseases of the musculoskeletal sys-
tem, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis,
and spondylosis.
Osteoarthritis is the top-ranked condition
responsible for disability among users of both
canes and walkers (Tables F and G). More than one-
fifth (22.3 percent) of cane users and nearly one-
fifth (19.1 percent) of walker users mention
osteoarthritis as the main cause of functional or
activity limitation, or 976,000 and 335,000 persons,
respectively. For both cane and walker users, cere-
brovascular disease and orthopedic impairments of
the lower extremity are also highly prevalent.
Cerebrovascular disease is the primary cause of
disability among 294,000 cane users and 136,000
walker users; orthopedic impairment of the lower
extremity affects 270,000 cane users and 91,000
walker users. Back problems, senility, heart dis-
ease, hip problems, and rheumatoid arthritis are
also prevalent among both cane and walker users.
The top four conditions associated with the use
of crutches (Table H) all have similar prevalence:
osteoarthritis is the main cause of disability for
59,000 crutch users; orthopedic impairments of the
lower extremity affect 55,000 persons; absence or
loss of lower extremity affects 47,000 persons; and
late effects of injury are the main cause of limitation
among 40,000 crutch users.
Leading Conditions by Age Group
Osteoarthritis, the most prevalent main cause
of disability among mobility device users at all
ages, remains the leading condition for both of the
age groups shown in Tables I and J. Among work-
ing-age adults, it is the primary cause of disability
for 228,000 persons, accounting for 10.5 percent of
mobility device use; among the elderly, osteoarthri-
tis is responsible for a much larger proportion (23.7
percent) of mobility device use, affecting 957,000
persons.
Among working-age adults, the next three
conditions all have similar prevalences: interver-
tebral disc disorders are the primary cause of dis-
ability among 176,000 mobility device users;
orthopedic impairments of the back or neck affect
162,000 persons; and orthopedic impairments of
the lower extremity affect 140,000 persons. Taken
together, the two back-related conditions (disc
disorders and orthopedic impairments) are
responsible for mobility device use among 337,000
persons, making the general category of “back
Table G. Leading conditions associated with walker use, all ages.
All conditions 1,752 100.00
1 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 335 19.09
2 Cerebrovascular disease 136 7.75
3 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 91 5.20
4 Senility without mention of psychosis 81 4.64
5 Orthopedic impairment of hip and/or pelvis 75 4.29
6 Other forms of heart disease 73 4.15
7 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 62 3.54
8 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 54 3.09
9 Chronic injuries or late effects of injuries 50 2.83
10 Parkinson's disease 43 2.47
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Persons
Proportion of
(1000s)
device users (%)
Condition
Disability Statistics Report 1428
Table H. Leading conditions associated with the use of crutches, all ages.
All conditions 492 100.00
1 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 59 11.92
2 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 55 11.09
3 Absence or loss of lower extremity 47 9.45
4 Chronic injuries or late effects of injuries 40 8.04
5 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 25 4.98
6 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 21 4.33
7 Cerebral palsy 20 4.02
8 Orthopedic impairment of hip and/or pelvis 19 3.92
9 Intervertebral disc disorders 17 3.43
10 Other paralysis 11 * 2.32 *
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
*Standard error exceeds 30 percent of the estimate.
Persons
Proportion of
(1000s)
device users (%)
Condition
Table J. Leading conditions associated with mobility device use, ages 65 and over.
All conditions 4,040 100.00
1 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 957 23.68
2 Cerebrovascular disease 342 8.46
3 Senility without mention of psychosis 233 5.77
4 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 226 5.60
5 Other forms of heart disease 163 4.03
6 Orthopedic impairment of hip and/or pelvis 155 3.83
7 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 112 2.76
8 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 107 2.65
9 Absence or loss of rib, bone, joint, or muscle of trunk 102 2.51
10 Osteoporosis 83 2.04
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Proportion of
device users (%)
Persons
(1000s)
Condition
Table I. Leading conditions associated with mobility device use, ages 18–64.
All conditions 2,169 100.00
1 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 228 10.53
2 Intervertebral disc disorders 176 8.09
3 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 162 7.44
4 Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 140 6.46
5 Cerebrovascular disease 100 4.60
6 Multiple sclerosis 98 4.50
7 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 92 4.25
8 Absence or loss of lower extremity 71 3.28
9 Chronic injuries or late effects of injuries 69 3.19
10 Diabetes 54 2.47
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Persons
Proportion of
(1000s)
device users (%)
Condition
Mobility Device Use in the United States 29
problems” even more prevalent than osteoarthri-
tis in this group.
Among the elderly, cerebrovascular disease
ranks a distant second to osteoarthritis, affecting
342,000 persons as the primary cause of disabili-
ty. Next are senility, affecting 233,000 persons,
and orthopedic impairments of the lower
extremity, which affect 226,000 elderly mobility
device users. Heart disease, hip problems, back
problems, and rheumatoid arthritis are also
prevalent in this group.
The most prevalent main conditions associat-
ed with wheelchair/scooter use among working-
age adults (Table K) are multiple sclerosis (58,000
persons), paraplegia (45,000), and cerebrovascular
disease (44,000). Among the elderly (Table L), 30
percent of wheelchair/scooter users cite either
osteoarthritis (139,000 persons) or cerebrovascular
disease (136,000) as their primary cause of func-
tional or activity limitation.
Table K. Leading conditions associated with wheelchair or scooter use, ages 18–64.
All conditions 635 100.00
1 Multiple sclerosis 58 9.16
2 Paraplegia (paralysis of both legs) 45 7.01
3 Cerebrovascular disease 44 6.99
4 Quadriplegia (paralysis of entire body or four limbs) 32 4.96
5 Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 31 4.82
6 Absence or loss of lower extremity 29 4.53
7 Cerebral palsy 29 4.50
8 Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 21 3.34
9 Diabetes 21 * 3.28 *
10 Orthopedic impairment of back or neck 20 3.12
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
*Standard error exceeds 30 percent of the estimate.
Persons
Proportion of
(1000s)
device users (%)
Condition
Table L.Leading conditions associated with wheelchair or scooter use, ages 65 and over.
All conditions 916 100.00
1Osteoarthrosis and allied disorders 139 15.21
2Cerebrovascular disease 136 14.81
3Other forms of heart disease 43 4.73
4Orthopedic impairment of lower extremity 39 4.28
5Parkinson's disease 30 3.22
6Absence or loss of lower extremity 29 3.21
7Rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory polyarthropathies 26 2.86
8Hemiplegia (paralysis of one side of body, including limbs) 25 2.72
9Emphysema 23 2.52
10 Other circulatory system disorders 23 2.51
Conditions reported as the main cause of functional or activity limitation (see text).
Persons
Proportion of
(1000s)
device users (%)
Condition
Disability Statistics Report 1430
Mobility Device Use in the United States 31
In the Disability Followback Survey (DFS),
Phase II of the National Health Interview Survey
on Disability, adult respondents are asked various
questions about their environments. Questions
focus on features in the home that might make it
more accessible to persons limited in mobility, as
well as on difficulties in using the home, difficul-
ties encountered outside the home, and difficulties
associated with using public transportation.
Population estimates of mobility device users
having such accessibility features and encounter-
ing such difficulties are presented in Tables 11–13,
along with the proportion of users of each device
who have accessibility features or encounter
access problems. For comparison, statistics are also
presented on persons in the DFS sample who are
not mobility device users; note that these estimates
are not representative of the non-device-using
population in general, but only of the subset of
adults who would be eligible to participate in the
DFS, based on an actual or potential disability (see
Data Source and Accuracy). Table 11 presents sta-
tistics for adults of any age. Table 12 contains data
for working-age adults, and Table 13 presents data
for elderly adults.
Within and Around the Home
As Figure 20 shows, a minority of mobility
device users (39.3 percent) live in homes with all
rooms on one level (“counting basements and step-
down living areas as separate levels”). But more
than four-fifths of device users (85.8 percent) live in
homes with a bedroom, a bathroom, and the
kitchen all on the same floor.
In response to questions about “special fea-
tures to assist persons who have physical impair-
ments or health problems,” only a relatively small
proportion of mobility device users responded
affirmatively to each of the features mentioned.
ACCESSIBILITY FEATURES AND PROBLEMS
Figure 20.
0 20406080100
Entire home on one floor
Bedroom, bathroom, kitchen on same floor
Widened doorways or hallways
Ramps or street-level entrances
Railings for persons with disabilities
Automatic or easy-to-open doors
Accessible parking or drop-off site
Bathroom modifications
Kitchen modifications
Elevator, chair lift, or stair glide
Percent
Wheelchair users
Mobility device
users
Others with
disabilities
Figure 20. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with home accessibility features,
by type of feature and device, ages 18 and above.
Disability Statistics Report 1432
Device users in general are most likely to have
railings as an accessibility feature (31.0 percent),
bathroom modifications (29.6 percent), or accessi-
ble parking (26.4 percent). Ramps or street-level
entrances are the next most common accessibility
feature among device users (21.0 percent), with
the remaining features considerably less likely to
be found in the home: automatic or easy-open
doors (9.7 percent); elevator, chair lift, or stair
glide (9.6 percent), and kitchen modifications (4.0
percent).
Wheelchair users are more likely than device
users overall to have accessibility features: bath-
room modifications, ramps or street-level
entrances, accessible parking, and railings are each
mentioned about one-third of the time (36.5, 35.5,
32.0 and 31.2 percent, respectively). Widened
doorways or hallways are a feature in 20.6 percent
of wheelchair users’ homes. Again, the remaining
features occur considerably less often: automatic
or easy-open doors (12.8 percent); elevator, chair
lift, or stair glide (12.7 percent), and kitchen modi-
fications (7.4 percent).
Bathroom modifications are the accessibility
feature most likely to be reported as needed but not
present in the homes of mobility device users
(Table 11). Some 8.9 percent of device users and
11.6 percent of wheelchair users lack this needed
feature.
Although the vast majority of mobility device
users can move between the essential rooms of
their homes without using steps, leaving the home
presents much more of a problem. As shown in
Figure 21, a majority of mobility device users (62.1
percent) and half of wheelchair users (49.2 per-
cent) must use steps to enter or exit their homes. A
slight majority of wheelchair users (52.1 percent)
and two-fifths of mobility device users in general
(40.2 percent) report having difficulty entering or
leaving the home. And even within the home,
problems are frequently encountered: 47.0 percent
of wheelchair users and 31.9 percent of mobility
device users have difficulty reaching or opening
cabinets; 35.5 percent of wheelchair users and 19.2
percent of mobility device users have difficulty
using the bathroom; and 33.1 percent of wheel-
chair users and 16.3 percent of mobility device
users have difficulty opening or closing doors in
the home.
Outside the Home
Outside the home, one-third of wheelchair and
scooter users (33.2 and 34.1 percent, respectively)
report wheelchair accessibility problems (see Table
11). These figures exclude problems involving
public transportation, which is the subject of a sep-
arate set of questions. Users of other devices are
much less likely to report accessibility problems
with those devices: only 3.2 percent of mobility
device users report problems with assistive
devices other than wheelchairs.
Figure 21.
0 20406080100
Must use steps to enter
home
Difficulty entering or
leaving the home
Difficulty opening or
closing doors
Difficulty reaching or
opening cabinets
Difficulty using the
bathroom
Percent
Wheelchair users
Mobility device users
Others with disabilities
Figure 21. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users with home accessibility
difficulties, by type of difficulty and device, ages 18 and above.
Mobility Device Use in the United States 33
Public Transportation
Four-fifths of wheelchair users (82.0 percent)
report that their local public transportation
system is difficult to use or to get to (see Figure
22); two-thirds (66.9 percent) say it is very difficult
to use or get to. Among mobility device users in
general, the proportions are two-thirds (68.3 per-
cent) reporting difficulty and nearly one-half
(45.2 percent) reporting “very difficult” access.
Some 38.7 percent of wheelchair users specifically
report wheelchair access problems, and 39.9 per-
cent of mobility device users and 58.1 percent of
wheelchair users report that difficulty walking is
or would be a problem for them in using public
transit. Device users living in areas without pub-
lic transportation systems have been excluded
from these statistics.
Figure 22.
0 20406080100
Difficult to use or get to
Very difficult to use or get to
Wheelchair access
problems
Problems with other
assistive device
Difficulty walking on/to
transit
Percent
Wheelchair users
Mobility device users
Others with disabilities
Note: Statistics exclude persons living in areas without public transportation systems.
Figure 22. Proportion of mobility device users and non-users experiencing public transportation
difficulties, by type of difficulty and device, ages 18 and above.
Disability Statistics Report 1434
Mobility Device Use in the United States 35
Respondents to Phase I of the NHIS-D were
also asked about health insurance coverage dur-
ing the same interview, as part of the NHIS
Family Resources Supplement. Table 14 presents
population estimates for mobility device users
and non-users who are covered by various public
and private health insurance plans.5Note that
many people have more than one source of health
insurance; thus, the categories are not mutually
exclusive.
As shown in Figure 23, mobility device users
in all age categories are very likely to have some
form of health insurance. Roughly one-tenth of
children and working-age adults who use mobili-
ty devices are uninsured (9.6 and 12.5 percent,
respectively), while less than 1 percent of elderly
device users lack some form of coverage. Public
health insurance programs are crucial to mobility
device users in all age groups. Among children,
HEALTH INSURANCE
5 Respondents with unknown health insurance status (non-
response to the Family Resources Supplement) have been
excluded from the tabulations. Thus, overall population esti-
mates in Table 14 are slightly lower than those in Tables 1–4.
Figure 23.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Under 18
90.4
0.0
46.2
48.1
5.1
18–64
87.5
33.6
25.5
45.8
11.4
65 and above
99.2
95.3
14.9
65.7
6.4
Any insurance
Medicare
Medicaid
Private
insurance
Other
46.2 percent are covered under Medicaid, com-
pared to 48.1 percent with private insurance. And
among working-age adults, 45.8 percent have pri-
vate coverage, or about half of those with insur-
ance. One-third (33.6 percent) of working-age
device users are covered under Medicare and one-
quarter (25.5 percent) under Medicaid. Among the
elderly, the vast majority (95.3 percent) are cov-
ered under Medicare, but many also have private
plans (65.7 percent of elderly mobility device
users), in many cases so-called Medigap plans.
Wheelchair users are even more likely to be
covered under public insurance than are mobility
device users overall (see Figure 24). Among chil-
dren, 58.9 percent are covered under Medicaid,
while only 36.9 percent have private insurance.
Working-age wheelchair users are covered under
Medicare 41.9 percent of the time, private insur-
ance 45.1 percent, and Medicaid 31.8 percent of
the time. Among the elderly, 94.7 percent of
wheelchair users are covered under Medicare,
with private insurance plans held by 61.2 percent
of this population.
Percent
Figure 23. Health insurance coverage of mobility device users, by age and type of coverage.
Disability Statistics Report 1436
Figure 24.
0
20
40
60
80
100
Under 18
89.4
0.0
58.9
36.9
5.9
18–64
90.5
41.9
31.8
45.1
9.0
65 and above
98.8
94.7
17.4
61.2
7.9
Any insurance
Medicare
Medicaid
Private
insurance
Other
Percent
Figure 24. Health insurance coverage of wheelchair users, by age and type of coverage.
Mobility Device Use in the United States 37
As a group, the 6.8 million community-resident Americans who use mobility
devices differ in many significant ways from the population at large. They experi-
ence severe functional and activity limitations in much greater proportions, and
they are more than 40 times as likely to need assistance with self-care activities as
their counterparts who do not use mobility devices. Amajority are in poor or indif-
ferent health, and many have experienced a recent hospitalization. Many are
affected by debilitating health conditions, such as arthritis, stroke, or serious back
problems; others have long-term conditions and impairments, such as multiple
sclerosis or some form of paralysis.
A majority of the population using mobility devices is elderly, but there is a
substantial minority who are of working-age. Members of this group are very
unlikely to have jobs and, partly as a consequence, are substantially more likely
than the remainder of the population to live in poverty. At all ages, income levels
for mobility device users tend to be low, as do levels of educational attainment.
Women are more likely to use mobility devices than men, and African
Americans more likely than whites, who are in turn much more likely than Asians
and Pacific Islanders to be device users. Latinos are less likely to use mobility
devices than people not of Hispanic origin.
Most mobility device users, especially those using wheelchairs and scooters,
perceive themselves as having disabilities. Given the extent of functional and
activity limitation they experience, this fact comes as no surprise. But to the extent
that disability is seen as a result of environmental factors, the high rate of self-iden-
tification as disabled is even more easily understood. This report provides ample
evidence that mobility device users face access barriers on a daily basis. A majori-
ty of device users, for example, cannot leave their homes without using steps; half
of wheelchair users face the same obstacle. Few have the home accessibility fea-
tures that would facilitate basic household tasks, not to mention moving about
inside. And the vast majority report difficulty with public transit; for many, the dif-
ficulty is insurmountable.
Despite recent changes in society that have led to greater attention to environ-
mental accessibility and to opportunities for employment and independent living
for people with disabilities, it remains clear that the population using mobility
devices continues to face substantial challenges in achieving these goals.
CONCLUSIONS
Disability Statistics Report 1438
Mobility Device Use in the United States 39
LaPlante, M. & Carlson, D. (1996). Disability in the United States: Prevalence and
Causes, 1992. Disability Statistics Report (7). Washington, DC: U.S. Department
of Education, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research.
LaPlante, M.P., Hendershot, G.E., & Moss, A.J. (1992). Assistive Technology
Devices and Home Accessibility Features: Prevalence, Payment, Need and
Trends. Advance Data from Vital and Health Statistics, 217. Hyattsville,
Maryland: National Center for Health Statistics.
Manton, K.G., Corder, L.S., & Stallard, E. (1993). Changes in the Use of Personal
Assistance and Special Equipment from 1982 to 1989: Results from the 1982
and 1989 NLTCS. Gerontologist 33 (2), 168–176.
National Center for Health Statistics (1998). National Health Interview Survey on
Disability, Phase 1 and Phase 2, 1994 (machine readable data file and docu-
mentation, CD-ROM Series 10, No. 8A). Hyattsville, Maryland: National
Center for Health Statistics.
Russell, J.N., Hendershot, G.E., LeClere, F., Howie, L.J., & Adler, M. (1997). Trends
and Differential Use of Assistive Technology Devices: United States, 1994.
Advance Data from Vital and Health Statistics, 292. Hyattsville, Maryland:
National Center for Health Statistics.
REFERENCES
Disability Statistics Report 1440
Mobility Device Use in the United States 41
Table 1
Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by type of device,
gender, age, and family income: United States civilian noninstitutionalized
population, all ages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43
Table 2
Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices,
by type of device and sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian
noninstitutionalized population, all ages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .44
Table 3
Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices,
by type of device and sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian
noninstitutionalized population, ages 18–64 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46
Table 4
Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices,
by type of device and sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian
noninstitutionalized population, ages 65 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .47
Table 5
Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users,
by type of device: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, all ages . . . . . . . . . .48
Table 6
Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users,
by type of device: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 18–64 . . . . . . .50
Table 7
Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users, by
type of device: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 65 and above . . .52
Table 8
Health conditions and impairments reported as the main cause of disability among
mobility device users, by type of device: United States civilian noninstitutionalized
population, all ages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .54
Table 9
Health conditions and impairments reported as the main cause of disability among
mobility device users, by type of device: United States civilian noninstitutionalized
population, ages 18–64 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .55
Table 10
Health conditions and impairments reported as the main cause of disability among
mobility device users, by type of device: United States civilian noninstitutionalized
population, ages 65 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .56
Table 11
Prevalence of home accessibility features and environmental accessibility difficulties
among mobility device users and non-users, by type of device: United States
civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 18 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57
Table 12
Prevalence of home accessibility features and environmental accessibility difficulties
among mobility device users and non-users, by type of device: United States
civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 18–64 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .58
Table 13
Prevalence of home accessibility features and environmental accessibility difficulties
among mobility device users and non-users, by type of device: United States
civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 65 and above . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .59
Table 14
Number and proportion of mobility device users and non-users with and without
health insurance, by age and type of device: United States
civilian noninstitutionalized population . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .60
LIST OF DETAILED TABLES
Disability Statistics Report 1442
Mobility Device Use in the United States 43
Total
Number Number % Number %Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s)
All persons 260,763 253,942 97.38 6,821 2.62 1,679 0.64 1,503 0.58 155 0.06 142 0.05 6,126 2.35 4,755 1.82 566 0.22 1,820 0.70
Gender
Males 127,033 124,201 97.77 2,832 2.23 692 0.54 606 0.48 84 0.07 60 0.05 2,502 1.97 2,014 1.59 328 0.26 508 0.40
Females 133,730 129,741 97.02 3,989 2.98 987 0.74 897 0.67 71 0.05 82 0.06 3,624 2.71 2,741 2.05 238 0.18 1,312 0.98
Age
Under 18 70,349 70,204 99.79 145 0.21 88 0.12 79 0.11 18 * 0.02 * 0 0.00 73 0.10 19 * 0.03 36 0.05 27 0.04
Under 5 20,378 20,361 99.92 17 * 0.08 * 10 * 0.05 * 10 * 0.05 * 0 0.00 0 0.00 8 * 0.04 * 4 * 0.02 * 0 0.00 3 * 0.02 *
5-13 35,091 34,994 99.72 98 0.28 66 0.19 61 0.17 12 * 0.03 * 0 0.00 45 0.13 8 * 0.02 * 24 0.07 22 0.06
14-17 14,880 14,850 99.80 30 0.20 12 * 0.08 * 8 * 0.06 * 6 * 0.04 * 0 0.00 21 0.14 7 * 0.05 * 12 * 0.08 * 1 * 0.01 *
18-64 159,169 156,859 98.55 2,310 1.45 658 0.41 560 0.35 90 0.06 78 0.05 1,987 1.25 1,535 0.96 375 0.24 373 0.23
18-24 25,107 25,022 99.66 84 0.34 48 0.19 43 0.17 11 * 0.04 * 1 * 0.01 * 52 0.21 20 0.08 32 0.13 8 * 0.03 *
25-34 41,073 40,883 99.54 189 0.46 57 0.14 40 0.10 20 0.05 0 0.00 151 0.37 88 0.21 57 0.14 23 0.06
35-44 41,930 41,436 98.82 494 1.18 135 0.32 119 0.28 16 * 0.04 * 14 * 0.03 * 416 0.99 317 0.76 106 0.25 51 0.12
45-54 30,317 29,686 97.92 631 2.08 171 0.56 143 0.47 20 * 0.07 24 0.08 557 1.84 445 1.47 94 0.31 103 0.34
55-64 20,742 19,831 95.60 912 4.40 247 1.19 215 1.04 22 0.10 39 0.19 812 3.91 667 3.21 86 0.41 189 0.91
65 and over 31,245 26,879 86.03 4,366 13.97 933 2.99 864 2.76 47 0.15 64 0.21 4,065 13.01 3,200 10.24 155 0.50 1,421 4.55
65-69 9,698 9,034 93.15 664 6.85 170 1.75 151 1.55 8 * 0.08 * 21 0.22 610 6.29 491 5.07 56 0.58 160 1.65
70-74 8,658 7,865 90.84 793 9.16 173 2.00 154 1.78 16 * 0.18 * 13 * 0.15 * 729 8.41 594 6.86 36 0.41 233 2.69
75-84 10,194 8,352 81.93 1,842 18.07 410 4.02 387 3.79 18 0.18 25 0.25 1,702 16.69 1,372 13.46 49 0.49 582 5.71
85 and over 2,696 1,629 60.42 1,067 39.58 180 6.69 172 6.38 6 * 0.21 * 5 * 0.18 * 1,025 38.01 743 27.56 14 * 0.50 * 445 16.53
Family income
Under $10,000 23,254 21,684 93.25 1,571 6.75 325 1.40 297 1.28 27 0.11 * 24 0.10 * 1,453 6.25 1,147 4.93 126 0.54 476 2.05
$10,000-$14,999 18,670 17,774 95.20 896 4.80 204 1.09 188 1.01 11 * 0.06 * 18 0.10 822 4.40 652 3.49 61 0.33 244 1.30
$15,000-$24,999 39,983 38,635 96.63 1,348 3.37 377 0.94 332 0.83 41 0.10 23 0.06 1,184 2.96 930 2.33 112 0.28 347 0.87
$25,000-$34,999 36,154 35,495 98.18 659 1.82 169 0.47 141 0.39 20 0.05 24 0.07 588 1.63 432 1.20 74 0.21 162 0.45
$35,000 or more 106,642 105,507 98.94 1,135 1.06 320 0.30 286 0.27 36 0.03 34 0.03 996 0.93 730 0.68 134 0.13 267 0.25
Unknown 36,060 34,847 96.64 1,213 3.36 285 0.79 259 0.72 20 0.05 19 0.05 1,082 3.00 864 2.39 59 0.16 325 0.90
Source: National Health Interview Survey on Disability, 1994–95
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
Crutches
Walker
Scooter
Any
Cane
Manual
wheelchair
Electric
wheelchair
device
Table 1. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by type of device, gender, age,
Any mobility
device
and family income: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, all ages.
Wheelchair or scooter
No mobility
Other mobility device
Any
Disability Statistics Report 1444
Total
Number Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s)
All persons 260,763 253,942 97.38 6,821 2.62 1,599 0.61 142 0.05 4,755 1.82 566 0.22 1,820 0.70
Gender
Males 127,033 124,201 97.77 2,832 2.23 658 0.52 6 0 0.05 2,014 1.59 328 0.26 508 0.40
Females 133,730 129,741 97.02 3,989 2.98 941 0.70 8 2 0.06 2,741 2.05 238 0.18 1,312 0.98
Age
Under 18 70,349 70,204 99.79 14 5 0.21 8 8 0.12 0 0.00 19 * 0.03 36 0.05 27 0.04
Under 5 20,378 20,361 99.92 17 * 0.08 * 10 * 0.05 * 0 0.00 4 * 0.02 * 0 0.00 3 * 0.02 *
5-13 35,091 34,994 99.72 9 8 0.28 66 0.19 0 0.00 8 * 0.02 * 2 4 0.07 22 0.06
14-17 14,880 14,850 99.80 30 0.20 12 * 0.08 * 0 0.00 7 * 0.05 * 12 * 0.08 * 1 * 0.01 *
18-64 159,169 156,859 98.55 2,310 1.45 614 0.39 78 0.05 1,535 0.96 375 0.24 373 0.23
18-24 25,107 25,022 99.66 84 0.34 48 0.19 1 * 0.01 * 20 0.08 32 0.13 8 * 0.03 *
25-34 41,073 40,883 99.54 18 9 0.46 5 7 0.14 0 0.00 88 0.21 57 0.14 2 3 0.06
35-44 41,930 41,436 98.82 49 4 1.18 127 0.30 1 4 * 0.03 * 317 0.76 10 6 0.25 51 0.12
45-54 30,317 29,686 97.92 63 1 2.08 155 0.51 2 4 0.08 4 45 1.47 94 0.31 103 0.34
55-64 20,742 19,831 95.60 91 2 4.40 227 1.09 3 9 0.19 6 67 3.21 86 0.41 189 0.91
65 and over 31,245 26,879 86.03 4,366 13.97 897 2.87 6 4 0.21 3,200 10.24 1 55 0.50 1,421 4.55
65-69 9,698 9,034 93.15 66 4 6.85 156 1.61 2 1 0.22 4 91 5.07 56 0.58 160 1.65
70-74 8,658 7,865 90.84 79 3 9.16 164 1.90 1 3 * 0.15 * 594 6.86 36 0.41 233 2.69
75-84 10,194 8,352 81.93 1,842 18.07 401 3.93 25 0.25 1,372 13.46 49 0.49 582 5.71
85 and over 2,696 1,629 60.42 1,067 39.58 175 6.50 5 * 0.18 * 7 43 27.56 14 * 0.50 * 445 16.53
Age and Gender
Males
Under 18 35,997 35,909 99.75 88 0.25 51 0.14 0 0.00 8 * 0.02 * 2 5 0.07 19 0.05
Under 5 10,423 10,417 99.95 6 * 0.05 * 2 * 0.02 * 0 0.00 0 0.00 0 0.00 3 * 0.03 *
5-13 17,945 17,878 99.63 6 7 0.37 41 0.23 0 0.00 5 * 0.03 * 18 0.10 * 15 * 0.09
14-17 7,630 7,614 99.79 16 0.21 8 * 0.10 * 0 0.00 2 * 0.03 * 7 * 0.09 * 0 0.00
18-64 78,001 76,756 98.40 1,245 1.60 299 0.38 29 0.04 8 37 1.07 221 0.28 13 2 0.17
18-24 12,482 12,436 99.63 46 0.37 25 0.20 * 0 0.00 8 * 0.06 * 17 0.13 * 4 * 0.03 *
25-34 20,219 20,106 99.44 11 3 0.56 3 4 0.17 0 0.00 50 0.25 33 0.16 8 * 0.04 *
35-44 20,642 20,347 98.57 29 5 1.43 7 3 0.35 7 * 0.03 * 18 7 0.91 6 9 0.34 16 0.08
45-54 14,791 14,441 97.63 35 1 2.37 7 4 0.50 9 * 0.06 * 26 1 1.76 5 0 0.34 42 0.28
55-64 9,867 9,426 95.54 44 0 4.46 93 0.94 14 * 0.14 * 332 3.36 5 1 0.52 61 0.62
65 and over 13,035 11,536 88.50 1,499 11.50 308 2.36 31 0.24 1,169 8.97 82 0.63 358 2.75
65-69 4,428 4,119 93.03 30 9 6.97 71 1.59 10 * 0.23 * 248 5.59 3 1 0.69 62 1.41
70-74 3,742 3,435 91.79 30 7 8.21 61 1.64 5 * 0.15 * 25 2 6.73 1 8 0.48 54 1.44
75-84 4,017 3,407 84.81 610 15.19 138 3.43 1 3 * 0.32 * 462 11.49 29 0.71 157 3.90
85 and over 848 5 76 67.87 273 32.13 38 4.53 2 * 0.25 * 208 24.46 5 * 0.58 * 85 10.04
Females
Under 18 34,352 34,295 99.83 57 0.17 37 0.11 0 0.00 1 2 * 0.03 * 11 * 0.03 * 8 * 0.02 *
Under 5 9,955 9,944 99.88 1 2 * 0.12 * 7 * 0.07 * 0 0.00 4 * 0.04 * 0 0.00 0 0.00
5-13 17,146 17,115 99.82 3 1 0.18 26 0.15 0 0.00 2 * 0.01 * 6 * 0.03 * 7 * 0.04 *
14-17 7,250 7,236 99.81 14 * 0.19 * 4 * 0.05 * 0 0.00 5 * 0.07 * 5 * 0.07 * 1 * 0.02 *
18-64 81,168 80,103 98.69 1,065 1.31 316 0.39 49 0.06 6 98 0.86 154 0.19 24 2 0.30
18-24 12,625 12,586 99.69 39 0.31 23 0.18 1 * 0.01 * 12 * 0.09 * 16 * 0.13 * 4 * 0.03 *
25-34 20,854 20,778 99.63 76 0.37 23 0.11 0 0.00 3 8 0.18 2 3 0.11 15 * 0.07 *
35-44 21,288 21,089 99.07 19 9 0.93 5 4 0.25 7 * 0.04 * 130 0.61 37 0.17 34 0.16 *
45-54 15,525 15,245 98.19 28 0 1.81 8 2 0.53 1 5 * 0.09 * 184 1.19 44 0.28 61 0.40 *
55-64 10,876 10,404 95.67 47 1 4.33 134 1.24 2 5 0.23 3 35 3.08 34 0.31 127 1.17 *
device
device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
and sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, all ages.
Table 2. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by type of device
Any mobility
No mobility
Mobility Device Use in the United States 45
Total
Number Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s)
and sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, all ages.
Table 2 continued. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by type of device
Any mobility
No mobility
device
device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
65 and over 18,210 15,343 84.25 2,867 15.75 589 3.23 33 0.18 2,031 11.16 73 0.40 1,063 5.83 *
65-69 5,270 4,915 93.26 35 5 6.74 86 1.63 11 * 0.21 * 244 4.63 2 5 0.48 98 1.86 *
70-74 4,916 4,430 90.12 48 5 9.88 103 2.10 7 * 0.14 * 342 6.96 18 0.36 179 3.64 *
75-84 6,177 4,945 80.06 1,232 19.94 263 4.25 1 3 0.20 91 0 14.74 21 0.34 425 6.89 *
85 and over 1,847 1,053 56.99 794 43.01 137 7.41 3 * 0.15 * 535 28.98 9 * 0.47 * 3 60 19.51 *
Race
Native American 2,520 2,435 96.61 85 3.39 20 0.81 0 0.00 52 2.06 10 * 0.41 * 22 * 0.88
Asian/Pacific Isl. 8,919 8,831 99.02 88 0.98 31 0.35 3 * 0.04 * 59 0.66 13 * 0.15 * 22 * 0.25
Black 32,899 31,892 96.90 1,008 3.06 183 0.56 5 * 0.02 * 75 0 2.28 9 0 0.27 208 0.63
White 216,066 210,433 97.40 5,633 2.61 1,362 0.63 134 0.06 3,887 1.80 452 0.21 1,565 0.72
Other & unknown 358 35 1 98.10 7 * 1.95 * 2 * 0.52 * 0 0.00 7 * 1.95 * 0 0.00 3 * 0.88 *
Ethnicity
Hispanic origin 28,013 27,598 98.52 415 1.48 10 1 0.36 3 * 0.01 * 27 8 0.99 38 0.14 10 0 0.36
Other 232,750 226,343 97.25 6,406 2.75 1,497 0.64 139 0.06 4,477 1.92 528 0.23 1,721 0.74
Education
All persons 18 and
older
190,414 183,738 96.49 6,676 3.51 1,511 0.79 142 0.07 4,736 2.49 530 0.28 1,794 0.94
Years of schooling:
8 years or less 15,127 13,483 89.14 1,643 10.86 3 27 2.16 21 0.14 1,170 7.73 7 1 0.47 529 3.50
9-11 years 20,904 19,761 94.53 1,143 5.47 247 1.18 13 * 0.06 * 8 19 3.92 78 0.37 330 1.58
12 years 70,225 68,109 96.99 2,116 3.01 499 0.71 5 3 0.08 1,474 2.10 217 0.31 524 0.75
13-15 years 41,924 40,988 97.77 936 2.23 23 8 0.57 3 5 0.08 6 75 1.61 90 0.21 222 0.53
16 years or more 40,830 40,097 98.20 7 33 1.80 166 0.41 20 0.05 534 1.31 64 0.16 141 0.35
Unknown 1,405 1,300 92.57 10 4 7.43 34 2.44 0 0.00 64 4.59 9 * 0.67 * 48 3.42
Family income
Under $10,000 23,254 21,684 93.25 1,571 6.75 309 1.33 24 0.10 * 1,147 4.93 126 0.54 476 2.05
$10,000-$14,999 18,670 17,774 95.20 896 4.80 195 1.05 18 0.10 65 2 3.49 6 1 0.33 244 1.30
$15,000-$24,999 39,983 38,635 96.63 1,348 3.37 363 0.91 23 0.06 93 0 2.33 112 0.28 347 0.87
$25,000-$34,999 36,154 35,495 98.18 659 1.82 152 0.42 24 0.07 43 2 1.20 7 4 0.21 162 0.45
$35,000 or more 106,642 105,507 98.94 1,135 1.06 306 0.29 34 0.03 730 0.68 1 34 0.13 267 0.25
Unknown 36,060 34,847 96.64 1,213 3.36 273 0.76 19 0.05 8 64 2.39 59 0.16 325 0.90
Poverty status
Above poverty line 210,419 205,737 97.77 4,682 2.23 1,152 0.55 1 09 0.05 3,216 1.53 407 0.19 1,227 0.58
Below poverty line 31,954 30,689 96.04 1,265 3.96 272 0.85 24 0.08 901 2.82 1 20 0.38 349 1.09
Unknown 18,390 17,516 95.25 87 4 4.75 175 0.95 9 * 0.05 * 637 3.47 39 0.21 245 1.33
Region
Northeast 52,551 51,201 97.43 1,350 2.57 315 0.60 27 0.05 9 76 1.86 104 0.20 33 5 0.64
Midwest 63,428 61,779 97.40 1,648 2.60 370 0.58 47 0.07 1,175 1.85 134 0.21 457 0.72
South 88,310 85,847 97.21 2,463 2.79 569 0.64 46 0.05 1,692 1.92 208 0.23 637 0.72
West 56,474 55,114 97.59 1,360 2.41 345 0.61 23 0.04 9 11 1.61 121 0.21 39 2 0.69
Setting of residence
Metropolitan 205,507 200,465 97.55 5,042 2.45 1,241 0.60 106 0.05 3,518 1.71 412 0.20 1,352 0.66
Central city 78,318 76,146 97.23 2,173 2.77 526 0.67 31 0.04 1,536 1.96 1 77 0.23 580 0.74
Suburb 127,188 124,319 97.74 2,869 2.26 715 0.56 7 5 0.06 1,982 1.56 235 0.18 772 0.61
Non-metropolitan 55,256 53,477 96.78 1,780 3.22 358 0.65 36 0.07 1,237 2.24 155 0.28 469 0.85
Non-farm 53,778 52,032 96.75 1,746 3.25 349 0.65 36 0.07 1,211 2.25 152 0.28 465 0.86
Farm 1,479 1,445 97.74 3 3 2.26 9 * 0.58 * 0 0.00 2 6 1.76 3 * 0.20 * 4 * 0.29 *
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
Source: National Health Interview Survey on Disability, 1994–95
Disability Statistics Report 1446
Total
Number Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s)
All persons 159,169 156,859 98.55 2,310 1.45 6 14 0.39 78 0.05 1,535 0.96 375 0.24 373 0.23
Gender
Males 78,001 76,756 98.40 1,245 1.60 29 9 0.38 29 0.04 8 37 1.07 221 0.28 13 2 0.17
Females 81,168 80,103 98.69 1,065 1.31 31 6 0.39 49 0.06 6 98 0.86 154 0.19 24 2 0.30
Race
Native American 1,505 1,448 96.22 57 3.78 14 * 0.96 * 0 0.00 3 9 2.61 9 * 0.61 * 8 * 0.53 *
Asian/Pacific Isl. 5,908 5,879 99.51 29 0.49 13 * 0.22 * 1 * 0.02 * 16 0.27 6 * 0.10 * 6 * 0.10 *
Black 19,107 18,644 97.60 463 2.42 85 0.44 5 * 0.02 * 33 0 1.73 6 5 0.34 7 2 0.38
White 132,364 130,607 98.70 1,757 1.33 502 0.38 7 2 0.05 1,145 0.87 295 0.22 287 0.22
Other & unknown 286 281 98.60 4 * 1.44 * 0 0.00 0 0.00 4 * 1.44 * 0 0.00 1 * 0.45 *
Ethnicity
Hispanic origin 16,232 16,054 98.90 178 1.10 41 0.26 2 * 0.01 * 1 20 0.74 33 0.20 20 0.12
Other 142,937 140,805 98.51 2,132 1.49 57 3 0.40 76 0.05 1,415 0.99 343 0.24 353 0.25
Education
8 years or less 8,319 8,017 96.37 302 3.63 63 0.75 5 * 0.06 * 21 7 2.61 3 5 0.42 56 0.67
9-11 years 16,105 15,710 97.55 395 2.45 100 0.62 6 * 0.04 * 261 1.62 57 0.35 69 0.43
12 years 59,374 58,544 98.60 829 1.40 227 0.38 33 0.06 5 27 0.89 158 0.27 1 33 0.22
13-15 years 37,653 37,198 98.79 455 1.21 139 0.37 20 0.05 * 306 0.81 73 0.19 72 0.19
16 years or more 36,661 36,343 99.13 3 18 0.87 84 0.23 14 * 0.04 * 216 0.59 5 0 0.14 4 1 0.11
Unknown 1,057 1,046 98.92 1 1 * 1.08 * 2 * 0.22 * 0 0.00 8 * 0.77 * 2 * 0.23 * 2 * 0.21 *
Employment status
In labor force 125,465 124,834 99.50 632 0.50 1 25 0.10 16 * 0.01 * 391 0.31 167 0.13 64 0.05
Employed 120,019 119,457 99.53 562 0.47 107 0.09 14 * 0.01 * 35 2 0.29 144 0.12 54 0.05
Unemployed 5,446 5,376 98.72 7 0 1.28 1 8 0.33 1 * 0.03 * 39 0.71 2 3 0.42 9 * 0.17 *
Not in labor force 33,703 32,025 95.02 1,678 4.98 489 1.45 62 0.19 1,145 3.40 208 0.62 310 0.92
Family income
Under $10,000 12,197 11,682 95.78 515 4.22 1 19 0.98 13 * 0.10 * 343 2.81 86 0.70 104 0.85
$10,000-$14,999 9,607 9,317 96.98 290 3.02 82 0.85 9 * 0.09 * 2 02 2.10 32 0.34 66 0.68
$15,000-$24,999 22,651 22,218 98.09 433 1.91 140 0.62 13 * 0.06 * 281 1.24 69 0.31 61 0.27
$25,000-$34,999 22,400 22,154 98.90 245 1.10 58 0.26 15 * 0.07 * 152 0.68 5 3 0.24 3 4 0.15
$35,000 or more 71,202 70,657 99.23 545 0.77 146 0.20 21 0.03 362 0.51 101 0.14 71 0.10
Unknown 21,112 20,830 98.67 282 1.33 69 0.33 7 * 0.03 * 19 6 0.93 3 4 0.16 3 7 0.18
Poverty status
Above poverty line 132,936 131,399 98.84 1,537 1.16 4 50 0.34 60 0.05 996 0.75 2 64 0.20 235 0.18
Below poverty line 16,469 15,886 96.46 5 83 3.54 133 0.81 16 * 0.10 * 39 6 2.41 88 0.54 114 0.69
Unknown 9,764 9,574 98.05 191 1.95 32 0.32 2 * 0.02 * 1 43 1.46 22 0.23 24 0.25
Region
Northeast 32,129 31,693 98.64 436 1.36 138 0.43 12 * 0.04 283 0.88 66 0.21 77 0.24
Midwest 38,525 37,983 98.59 542 1.41 141 0.37 28 0.07 374 0.97 9 2 0.24 84 0.22
South 54,233 53,355 98.38 878 1.62 200 0.37 26 0.05 584 1.08 146 0.27 134 0.25
West 34,281 33,828 98.68 453 1.32 135 0.39 11 0.03 * 29 5 0.86 7 1 0.21 7 8 0.23
Setting of residence
Metropolitan 126,428 124,683 98.62 1,744 1.38 47 2 0.37 58 0.05 1,179 0.93 269 0.21 289 0.23
Central city 48,270 47,468 98.34 802 1.66 191 0.39 19 0.04 556 1.15 1 13 0.23 148 0.31
Suburb 78,157 77,215 98.79 942 1.21 281 0.36 40 0.05 623 0.80 156 0.20 141 0.18
Non-metropolitan 32,741 32,175 98.27 566 1.73 142 0.43 20 * 0.06 * 356 1.09 106 0.33 84 0.26
Non-farm 31,822 31,267 98.26 555 1.74 138 0.43 20 * 0.06 * 349 1.10 106 0.33 82 0.26
Farm 919 908 98.81 11 * 1.19 * 4 * 0.47 * 0 0.00 8 * 0.85 * 1 * 0.10 * 2 * 0.23 *
Source: National Health Interview Survey on Disability, 1994–95
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Wheelchair
Table 3. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by type of device and
sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 18–64.
No mobility
device
Any mobility
device
Scooter
Mobility Device Use in the United States 47
Total
Number Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s) (1000s)
All persons 31,245 26,879 86.03 4,366 13.97 89 7 2.87 6 4 0.21 3,200 10.24 155 0.50 1,421 4.55
Gender
Males 13,035 11,536 88.50 1,499 11.50 3 08 2.36 31 0.24 1,169 8.97 82 0.63 358 2.75
Females 18,210 15,343 84.25 2,867 15.75 5 89 3.23 33 0.18 2,031 11.16 73 0.40 1,063 5.83
Race
Native American 15 5 130 83.66 25 16.34 3 * 1.69 * 0 0.00 13 * 8.09 * 1 * 0.79 * 1 4 * 9.23
Asian/Pacific Isl. 57 8 526 91.01 52 8.99 17 2.88 2 * 0.35 * 43 7.39 2 * 0.37 * 13 * 2.25 *
Black 2,533 2,012 79.40 521 20.57 87 3.44 1 * 0.02 * 4 15 16.40 20 0.81 131 5.19
White 27,964 24,199 86.50 3,765 13.46 7 88 2.82 62 0.22 2,727 9.75 131 0.47 1,260 4.51
Other & unknown 15 * 12 * 80.90 3 * 19.14 * 2 * 12.44 * 0 0.00 3 * 19.14 * 0 0.00 2 * 12.44 *
Ethnicity
Hispanic origin 1,578 1,358 86.10 219 13.90 48 3.03 1 * 0.09 * 15 5 9.84 3 * 0.21 * 78 4.97
Other 29,668 25,521 86.02 4,147 13.98 8 49 2.86 63 0.21 3,045 10.26 151 0.51 1,342 4.52
Education
8 years or less 6,808 5,466 80.29 1,342 19.71 265 3.89 16 0.24 953 13.99 36 0.53 473 6.95
9-11 years 4,799 4,050 84.40 748 15.60 147 3.06 7 * 0.14 * 558 11.63 21 0.44 261 5.44
12 years 10,852 9,565 88.14 1,287 11.86 272 2.51 20 0.19 947 8.72 59 0.54 391 3.60
13-15 years 4,271 3,789 88.73 481 11.27 9 9 2.31 1 5 0.35 369 8.64 17 0.40 150 3.51
16 years or more 4,169 3,753 90.04 4 15 9.96 83 1.98 6 * 0.14 * 318 7.62 14 * 0.35 * 100 2.40
Unknown 348 255 73.25 93 26.75 32 9.17 0 0.00 56 16.18 7 * 2.04 * 46 13.19
Family income
Under $10,000 4,244 3,208 75.61 1,035 24.39 180 4.24 11 * 0.27 * 799 18.83 35 0.81 370 8.71
$10,000-$14,999 3,948 3,353 84.93 595 15.07 106 2.68 9 * 0.23 * 450 11.41 24 0.60 175 4.43
$15,000-$24,999 6,946 6,056 87.19 889 12.81 204 2.93 10 * 0.15 * 6 49 9.34 39 0.56 281 4.05
$25,000-$34,999 3,964 3,567 89.97 397 10.03 85 2.16 8 * 0.21 * 2 78 7.01 15 0.38 126 3.17
$35,000 or more 5,601 5,061 90.36 540 9.64 132 2.36 13 * 0.23 * 3 60 6.43 20 0.36 188 3.35
Unknown 6,543 5,634 86.10 909 13.90 190 2.91 12 * 0.19 * 664 10.15 22 0.34 282 4.30
Poverty status
Above poverty line 24,470 21,426 87.56 3,044 12.44 64 2 2.62 4 9 0.20 2,207 9.02 117 0.48 975 3.99
Below poverty line 2,617 1,966 75.10 6 52 24.90 120 4.59 9 * 0.33 * 4 99 19.07 21 0.82 230 8.79
Unknown 4,158 3,488 83.87 671 16.13 135 3.24 7 * 0.16 * 494 11.89 16 * 0.38 * 2 15 5.17
Region
Northeast 6,978 6,092 87.30 886 12.70 159 2.28 15 * 0.21 * 6 89 9.88 30 0.42 254 3.65
Midwest 7,815 6,742 86.27 1,073 13.73 2 09 2.68 19 0.24 798 10.22 3 3 0.43 360 4.61
South 10,412 8,883 85.32 1,529 14.68 3 38 3.24 19 0.19 1,097 10.54 48 0.46 497 4.77
West 6,040 5,162 85.45 879 14.55 191 3.17 12 * 0.19 * 615 10.18 44 0.72 309 5.11
Setting of residence
Metropolitan 23,526 20,333 86.43 3,192 13.57 7 05 3.00 48 0.20 2,326 9.89 114 0.49 1,040 4.42
Central city 9,140 7,805 85.40 1,334 14.60 313 3.43 13 * 0.14 * 9 73 10.64 54 0.59 429 4.69
Suburb 14,386 12,528 87.09 1,858 12.91 3 92 2.72 35 0.24 1,353 9.40 61 0.42 611 4.25
Non-metropolitan 7,720 6,546 84.79 1,174 15.21 1 92 2.49 16 0.21 875 11.33 4 1 0.53 381 4.94
Non-farm 7,514 6,362 84.67 1,152 15.33 1 88 2.50 16 0.21 856 11.40 3 9 0.51 379 5.04
Farm 206 1 83 89.07 23 10.93 4 * 2.07 * 0 0.00 18 * 8.87 2 * 0.99 * 2 * 1.02 *
Source: National Health Interview Survey on Disability, 1994–95
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
Wheelchair
Table 4. Number of persons and proportion of population using mobility devices, by type of device
and sociodemographic characteristics: United States civilian noninstitutionalized population,
ages 65 and above.
No mobility
device
Any mobility
device
Scooter
Cane
Crutches
Walker
Disability Statistics Report 1448
Number % Number %
Number
%
Number
% Number %
Number
% Number %
Number
%
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
All persons 260,763 100.0 253,942 100.0 6,821 100.0 1,599 100.0 142 100.0 4,755 100.0 566 100.0 1,820 100.0
Health status
Excellent 97,569 37.4 97,190 38.3 3 79 5.6 76 4.7 8 * 5.4 * 236 5.0 68 12.1 8 2 4.5
Very good 75,130 28.8 74,433 29.3 697 10.2 11 6 7.2 8 * 5.8 * 485 10.2 80 14.2 1 51 8.3
Good 60,045 23.0 58,323 23.0 1,722 25.2 346 21.6 3 2 22.5 1,200 25.2 1 61 28.4 37 4 20.6
Fair 18,603 7.1 16,654 6.6 1,949 28.6 4 07 25.5 38 26.7 1,438 30.3 119 21.0 5 20 28.5
Poor 7,214 2.8 5,199 2.0 2,015 29.5 638 39.9 5 2 36.4 1,355 28.5 1 36 24.1 66 7 36.6
Unknown 2,202 0.8 2,144 0.8 58 0.9 1 6 1.0 5 * 3.3 * 41 0.9 2 * 0.3 * 2 7 1.5
Hospitalization history
Discharged in prior 6 months 11,252 4.3 9,776 3.8 1,476 21.6 4 78 29.9 35 24.7 8 98 18.9 154 27.2 55 6 30.6
Hospitalization in prior year 19,439 7.5 17,210 6.8 2,229 32.7 687 43.0 4 8 33.8 1,420 29.9 1 99 35.1 810 44.5
Perceived disability
Self-perceived disability 17,557 6.7 13,312 5.2 4,246 62.2 1,285 80.4 122 85.7 2,796 58.8 357 63.1 1,239 68.1
Other-perceived disability 14,455 5.5 10,530 4.1 3,925 57.5 1,255 78.5 1 20 84.3 2,510 52.8 3 42 60.4 1,197 65.8
No perceived disability 241,444 92.6 239,171 94.2 2,273 33.3 2 40 15.0 14 10.2 1,754 36.9 1 83 32.4 492 27.0
Activity limitation
Unable to do major activity 11,904 4.6 8,958 3.5 2,946 43.2 1,057 66.1 8 5 59.5 1,808 38.0 251 44.4 9 57 52.6
Only limited in major activity 14,725 5.6 12,970 5.1 1,755 25.7 349 21.8 3 9 27.1 1,248 26.2 146 25.7 4 71 25.9
Limited only in other activity 12,320 4.7 11,280 4.4 1,039 15.2 81 5.1 14 9.7 883 18.6 44 7.8 19 1 10.5
Not limited in activity 221,814 85.1 220,733 86.9 1,081 15.8 1 12 7.0 5 * 3.6 * 817 17.2 125 22.1 20 2 11.1
All persons aged 18 & over 190,414 100.0 183,738 100.0 6,676 100.0 1,511 100.0 142 100.0 4,736 100.0 5 30 100.0 1,794 100.0
Functional limitation
Limited in 1 or more 25,103 13.2 19,183 10.4 5,920 88.7 1,453 96.2 140 98.4 4,136 87.3 433 81.8 1,711 95.4
Unable to perform 1 or more 7,595 4.0 3,970 2.2 3,625 54.3 1,294 85.7 109 76.8 2,182 46.1 240 45.4 1,336 74.5
No functional limitation 165,311 86.8 164,555 89.6 75 6 11.3 5 8 3.8 2 * 1.6 * 599 12.7 96 18.2 83 4.6
Specific functional limitations
Lifting 10 lbs. 10,046 5.3 6,610 3.6 3,435 51.5 1,077 71.3 78 55.2 2,226 47.0 217 40.9 1,195 66.6
Unable 3,314 1.7 1,600 0.9 1,714 25.7 73 0 48.3 4 2 29.6 933 19.7 7 8 14.8 725 40.4
Difficulty only 6,732 3.5 5,010 2.7 1,721 25.8 347 23.0 3 6 25.6 1,293 27.3 1 39 26.2 47 0 26.2
Climbing stairs 11,020 5.8 6,654 3.6 4,365 65.4 1,336 88.4 116 81.8 2,826 59.7 315 59.5 1,464 81.6
Unable 2,519 1.3 738 0.4 1,781 26.7 962 63.7 63 44.3 760 16.1 107 20.2 79 4 44.3
Difficulty only 8,501 4.5 5,916 3.2 2,585 38.7 374 24.7 5 3 37.5 2,066 43.6 2 08 39.3 67 0 37.3
Walking 1/4 mile 14,558 7.6 9,412 5.1 5,147 77.1 1,424 94.2 138 96.9 3,469 73.3 379 71.5 1,603 89.4
Unable 4,936 2.6 2,061 1.1 2,875 43.1 1,186 78.5 102 72.0 1,596 33.7 183 34.5 1,132 63.1
Difficulty only 9,622 5.1 7,351 4.0 2,271 34.0 238 15.7 3 5 24.9 1,873 39.6 1 96 36.9 47 1 26.3
Standing 20 mins. 11,261 5.9 6,936 3.8 4,325 64.8 1,311 86.8 125 87.6 2,821 59.6 327 61.7 1,409 78.6
Unable 2,738 1.4 902 0.5 1,836 27.5 922 61.0 67 47.1 896 18.9 130 24.6 70 8 39.5
Difficulty only 8,524 4.5 6,035 3.3 2,489 37.3 389 25.8 5 8 40.5 1,924 40.6 1 97 37.2 70 1 39.1
Bending down 12,074 6.3 8,018 4.4 4,057 60.8 1,226 81.2 110 77.4 2,662 56.2 297 56.1 1,327 74.0
Unable 2,359 1.2 842 0.5 1,517 22.7 837 55.4 55 38.4 679 14.3 103 19.4 58 7 32.7
Difficulty only 9,715 5.1 7,176 3.9 2,539 38.0 389 25.8 5 5 39.0 1,983 41.9 1 95 36.8 74 0 41.3
Reaching up or out 5,272 2.8 3,520 1.9 1,752 26.2 563 37.3 59 41.6 1,158 24.5 112 21.2 5 72 31.9
Unable 916 0.5 455 0.2 46 0 6.9 227 15.0 11 * 8.0 * 242 5.1 1 5 2.9 168 9.3
Difficulty only 4,357 2.3 3,065 1.7 1,292 19.3 336 22.2 4 8 33.6 916 19.3 97 18.3 405 22.6
Grasping 4,695 2.5 3,255 1.8 1,440 21.6 51 0 33.7 4 7 33.4 941 19.9 7 9 14.9 452 25.2
Unable 309 0.2 129 0.1 18 0 2.7 137 9.1 6 * 4.6 * 65 1.4 4 * 0.8 * 40 2.2
Difficulty only 4,387 2.3 3,127 1.7 1,260 18.9 373 24.7 4 1 28.8 875 18.5 74 14.0 413 23.0
Holding pen 3,141 1.6 1,975 1.1 1,166 17.5 478 31.6 37 25.8 7 20 15.2 43 8.2 434 24.2
Unable 330 0.2 138 0.1 19 2 2.9 137 9.0 4 * 2.7 * 66 1.4 0 0.0 61 3.4
Difficulty only 2,811 1.5 1,838 1.0 974 14.6 3 41 22.6 33 23.2 65 4 13.8 43 8.2 374 20.8
Cane
Walker
Table 5. Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users, by type of device:
Total
No mobility
device
Crutches
United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, all ages.
device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Any mobility
Number % Number %
Number
%
Number
% Number %
Number
% Number %
Number
%
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
Cane
Walker
Table 5 continued. Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users, by type of device:
Total
No mobility
device
Crutches
United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, all ages.
device
Wheelchair
Scooter
Any mobility
Mobility Device Use in the United States 49
All persons aged 5 and over 240,385 100.0 233,581 100.0 6,804 100.0 1,589 100.0 14 2 100.0 4,750 100.0 566 100.0 1,817 100.0
Self-care activities (ADL)
Any ADL limitation 5,710 2.4 2,500 1.1 3,210 47.2 1,274 80.2 101 71.3 1,794 37.8 270 47.7 1,309 72.1
Needs assistance 3,821 1.6 1,721 0.7 2,101 30.9 996 62.7 5 3 37.3 1,043 22.0 1 32 23.4 90 8 50.0
No ADL limitation 234,675 97.6 231,081 98.9 3,594 52.8 3 15 19.8 41 28.7 2,957 62.2 296 52.3 5 08 27.9
Specific ADL limitations
Bathing 4,288 1.8 1,707 0.7 2,582 37.9 1,145 72.0 75 52.7 1,370 28.8 191 33.7 1,075 59.2
Needs assistance 3,105 1.3 1,290 0.6 1,816 26.7 92 8 58.4 4 0 28.3 828 17.4 100 17.6 813 44.8
Dressing 2,846 1.2 1,174 0.5 1,672 24.6 86 8 54.6 4 5 31.8 779 16.4 130 22.9 69 1 38.0
Needs assistance 2,381 1.0 972 0.4 1,409 20.7 795 50.0 3 7 26.2 598 12.6 91 16.1 5 96 32.8
Eating 967 0.4 443 0.2 524 7.7 37 1 23.3 22 15.3 1 76 3.7 29 5.2 1 95 10.7
Needs assistance 775 0.3 350 0.1 424 6.2 319 20.1 1 1 * 8.1 * 125 2.6 19 3.4 153 8.4
Transferring 2,663 1.1 910 0.4 1,753 25.8 881 55.4 67 47.0 850 17.9 154 27.2 73 4 40.4
Needs assistance 1,684 0.7 528 0.2 1,156 17.0 694 43.7 3 9 27.4 482 10.1 65 11.5 4 70 25.9
Toileting 2,090 0.9 583 0.2 1,507 22.1 835 52.6 52 36.4 646 13.6 120 21.3 69 3 38.1
Needs assistance 1,253 0.5 3 99 0.2 8 54 12.6 59 6 37.5 23 15.9 27 3 5.8 4 3 7.5 362 19.9
Getting around inside 2,464 1.0 60 2 0.3 1,862 27.4 9 47 59.6 7 0 49.0 834 17.6 172 30.4 8 76 48.2
Needs assistance 1,282 0.5 3 63 0.2 9 19 13.5 59 7 37.6 25 17.8 34 2 7.2 4 7 8.3 390 21.5
All persons aged 18 and over 190,414 100.0 183,738 100.0 6,676 100.0 1,511 100.0 14 2 100.0 4,736 100.0 530 100.0 1,794 100.0
Home-management activities (IADL)
Any IADL limitation 14,689 7.7 10,141 5.5 4,548 68.1 1,305 86.4 124 87.1 3,006 63.5 330 62.2 1,481 82.6
Needs assistance 12,548 6.6 8,410 4.6 4,138 62.0 1,218 80.6 115 80.6 2,707 57.2 295 55.7 1,382 77.0
No IADL limitation 175,725 92.3 173,597 94.5 2,128 31.9 206 13.6 1 8 12.9 1,730 36.5 2 00 37.8 312 17.4
Specific IADL limitations
Preparing meals 3,295 1.7 1,545 0.8 1,750 26.2 8 51 56.3 46 32.0 8 39 17.7 93 17.6 7 89 44.0
Needs assistance 2,782 1.5 1,283 0.7 1,499 22.4 74 4 49.3 4 0 28.2 708 15.0 6 6 12.5 684 38.1
Shopping 5,204 2.7 2,540 1.4 2,664 39.9 1,049 69.4 67 47.4 1,497 31.6 169 31.8 1,142 63.7
Needs assistance 4,638 2.4 2,216 1.2 2,422 36.3 961 63.6 6 4 44.7 1,353 28.6 1 51 28.5 1,051 58.6
Managing money 2,909 1.5 1,762 1.0 1,147 17.2 535 35.4 21 15.1 580 12.2 35 6.7 51 0 28.4
Needs assistance 2,618 1.4 1,578 0.9 1,041 15.6 48 2 31.9 2 0 14.1 528 11.2 31 5.8 47 0 26.2
Using the telephone 1,376 0.7 778 0.4 599 9.0 3 21 21.3 1 1 * 7.6 * 26 6 5.6 14 * 2.6 * 252 14.1
Needs assistance 1,092 0.6 595 0.3 4 97 7.4 276 18.3 8 * 5.8 * 216 4.6 5 * 1.0 * 2 05 11.4
Heavy housework 13,625 7.2 9,221 5.0 4,404 66.0 1,287 85.1 120 84.6 2,894 61.1 322 60.8 1,444 80.5
Needs assistance 11,432 6.0 7,530 4.1 3,902 58.4 1,149 76.0 107 75.2 2,549 53.8 281 53.1 1,303 72.6
Light housework 4,256 2.2 1,978 1.1 2,278 34.1 988 65.4 6 6 46.2 1,201 25.4 1 55 29.3 98 1 54.7
Needs assistance 3,612 1.9 1,629 0.9 1,983 29.7 882 58.4 5 4 38.3 1,021 21.6 1 34 25.3 86 7 48.3
ADL/IADL
Any ADL or IADL limitation 15,471 8.1 10,588 5.8 4,883 73.1 1,392 92.1 128 89.7 3,237 68.4 361 68.2 1,596 89.0
Needs assistance 13,122 6.9 8,726 4.7 4,397 65.9 1,311 86.7 117 82.4 2,862 60.4 311 58.7 1,489 83.0
No ADL/IADL limitation 174,943 91.9 173,150 94.2 1,793 26.9 119 7.9 1 5 * 10.3 1,498 31.6 168 31.8 197 11.0
Source: National Health Interview Survey on Disability, 1994–95
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
Disability Statistics Report 1450
Number % Number %
Number
% Number % Number %
Number
% Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s) (1000s)
All persons 159,169 100.0 156,859 100.0 2,310 100.0 614 100.0 78 100.0 1,535 100.0 375 100.0 373 100.0
Health status
Excellent 56,635 35.6 56,498 36.0 1 37 5.9 44 7.1 3 * 4.3 * 5 7 3.7 4 7 12.4 1 9 * 5.2 *
Very good 48,574 30.5 48,379 30.8 1 95 8.5 53 8.6 6 * 7.7 * 100 6.5 59 15.7 22 5.9
Good 37,606 23.6 37,089 23.6 518 22.4 148 24.1 13 * 16.3 * 30 7 20.0 114 30.3 5 0 13.4
Fair 11,154 7.0 10,535 6.7 620 26.8 145 23.7 20 25.9 45 3 29.5 67 17.9 97 26.0
Poor 4,215 2.6 3,391 2.2 824 35.7 220 35.8 31 39.8 6 07 39.5 89 23.7 177 47.3
Unknown 984 0.6 968 0.6 16 0.7 4 * 0.7 * 5 * 6.0 * 11 * 0.7 * 0 0.0 8 * 2.2 *
Hospitalization history
Discharged in prior 6 months 6,719 4.2 6,219 4.0 5 00 21.6 167 27.1 15 18.8 30 5 19.9 1 09 29.1 131 35.0
Hospitalization in prior year 11,956 7.5 11,215 7.1 741 32.1 252 41.1 19 24.8 45 0 29.3 140 37.3 1 70 45.5
Perceived disability
Self-perceived disability 10,240 6.4 8,534 5.4 1,707 73.9 498 81.1 6 9 88.9 1,144 74.5 2 30 61.4 300 80.3
Other-perceived disability 8,424 5.3 6,841 4.4 1,583 68.5 493 80.2 68 86.6 1,039 67.7 2 18 58.2 286 76.7
No perceived disability 147,896 92.9 147,375 94.0 52 1 22.5 91 14.8 7 * 8.7 * 33 4 21.8 129 34.5 7 0 18.7
Activity limitation
Unable to do major activity 8,192 5.1 6,716 4.3 1,476 63.9 441 71.8 5 6 71.6 1,006 65.5 187 49.9 290 77.6
Only limited in major activity 8,311 5.2 7,842 5.0 469 20.3 115 18.7 21 26.7 308 20.1 8 2 22.0 42 11.4
Limited only in other activity 6,137 3.9 6,012 3.8 125 5.4 18 2.9 0 0.0 95 6.2 22 5.8 11 * 2.8 *
Not limited in activity 136,529 85.8 136,289 86.9 2 40 10.4 41 6.6 1 * 1.7 * 126 8.2 84 22.4 31 8.2
Functional limitation
Limited in 1 or more 13,907 8.7 11,860 7.6 2,047 88.6 5 74 93.5 77 98.6 1,383 90.1 293 78.1 348 93.3
Unable to perform 1 or more 3,322 2.1 2,094 1.3 1,228 53.2 5 07 82.5 58 74.0 7 24 47.2 146 38.9 280 75.1
No functional limitation 145,262 91.3 144,999 92.4 263 11.4 4 0 6.5 1 * 1.4 * 153 9.9 8 2 21.9 2 5 6.7
Specific functional limitations
Lifting 10 lbs. 5,331 3.3 4,137 2.6 1,194 51.7 3 98 64.8 46 58.7 771 50.2 152 40.5 251 67.2
Unable 1,370 0.9 8 44 0.5 52 6 22.8 2 28 37.1 23 29.5 3 00 19.5 51 13.7 142 37.9
Difficulty only 3,961 2.5 3,293 2.1 66 8 28.9 1 70 27.7 23 29.2 4 72 30.7 101 26.9 109 29.2
Climbing stairs 5,202 3.3 3,647 2.3 1,555 67.3 5 26 85.7 64 82.3 9 91 64.6 208 55.5 314 84.2
Unable 901 0.6 34 7 0.2 553 24.0 365 59.4 3 1 39.2 19 5 12.7 6 1 16.3 151 40.5
Difficulty only 4,301 2.7 3,299 2.1 1,002 43.4 161 26.3 3 4 43.2 796 51.9 147 39.2 163 43.7
Walking 1/4 mile 6,818 4.3 5,044 3.2 1,774 76.8 5 61 91.3 76 97.4 1,165 75.9 2 46 65.5 326 87.5
Unable 1,808 1.1 9 12 0.6 89 7 38.8 4 50 73.2 52 67.0 4 75 30.9 106 28.4 215 57.6
Difficulty only 5,009 3.1 4,132 2.6 87 7 38.0 1 11 18.0 24 30.3 6 91 45.0 139 37.1 111 29.8
Standing 20 mins. 5,782 3.6 4,207 2.7 1,575 68.2 5 17 84.2 67 86.3 1,020 66.4 2 21 59.0 2 92 78.2
Unable 1,083 0.7 4 33 0.3 65 0 28.2 3 69 60.1 37 47.3 3 00 19.5 78 20.7 142 38.1
Difficulty only 4,699 3.0 3,775 2.4 92 4 40.0 1 48 24.1 30 38.9 7 20 46.9 144 38.3 150 40.1
Bending down 6,742 4.2 5,227 3.3 1,515 65.6 488 79.4 60 77.2 9 96 64.9 191 51.0 283 75.7
Unable 1,083 0.7 5 20 0.3 56 3 24.4 3 30 53.7 29 37.0 2 38 15.5 53 14.1 131 35.1
Difficulty only 5,659 3.6 4,707 3.0 95 2 41.2 1 58 25.7 31 40.3 7 58 49.4 138 36.9 152 40.6
Reaching up or out 2,916 1.8 2,287 1.5 629 27.2 206 33.5 37 47.7 414 27.0 71 18.8 116 31.0
Unable 424 0.3 26 2 0.2 163 7.0 76 12.3 9 * 11.0 * 92 6.0 10 * 2.6 * 27 7.2
Difficulty only 2,491 1.6 2,025 1.3 46 7 20.2 1 30 21.1 29 36.7 3 22 21.0 61 16.2 89 23.7
Grasping 2,800 1.8 2,198 1.4 602 26.1 228 37.2 33 41.7 3 87 25.2 56 15.0 127 33.9
Unable 151 0.1 66 0.0 8 5 3.7 67 11.0 5 * 6.7 * 27 1.8 3 * 0.7 * 10 * 2.8 *
Difficulty only 2,649 1.7 2,132 1.4 51 7 22.4 1 61 26.2 27 35.0 3 60 23.4 54 14.3 116 31.1
Holding pen 1,754 1.1 1,318 0.8 436 18.9 188 30.6 2 9 36.6 261 17.0 30 8.1 104 27.8
Unable 142 0.1 73 0.0 6 8 3.0 54 8.8 3 * 3.6 * 20 1.3 0 0.0 12 * 3.1 *
Difficulty only 1,612 1.0 1,245 0.8 367 15.9 1 34 21.8 26 33.0 2 42 15.7 30 8.1 92 24.7
Scooter
Cane
device
Crutches
Walker
Table 6. Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users, by type of device:
United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 18–64.
Any mobility
No mobility
Total
device
Wheelchair
Mobility Device Use in the United States 51
Number % Number %
Number
% Number % Number %
Number
% Number % Number %
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s) (1000s)
Scooter
Cane
device
Crutches
Walker
Table 6 continued. Health- and disability-related characteristics of mobility device users and non-users, by type of device:
United States civilian noninstitutionalized population, ages 18–64.
Any mobility
No mobility
Total
device
Wheelchair
Self-care activities (ADL)
Any ADL limitation 2,349 1.5 1,286 0.8 1,063 46.0 458 74.6 60 76.5 5 99 39.0 169 45.1 266 71.4
Needs assistance 1,537 1.0 855 0.5 6 82 29.5 336 54.7 32 41.6 36 4 23.7 75 20.0 181 48.6
No ADL limitation 156,819 98.5 155,572 99.2 1,247 54.0 1 56 25.4 18 23.5 9 36 61.0 206 54.9 107 28.6
Specific ADL limitations
Bathing 1,550 1.0 7 36 0.5 81 4 35.3 4 05 66.0 47 59.9 4 27 27.8 110 29.4 221 59.1
Needs assistance 1,072 0.7 538 0.3 5 34 23.1 298 48.6 26 33.7 25 0 16.3 54 14.3 150 40.1
Dressing 1,164 0.7 5 75 0.4 58 9 25.5 3 03 49.3 29 37.3 2 99 19.5 74 19.7 156 41.8
Needs assistance 919 0.6 439 0.3 480 20.8 273 44.5 25 32.2 228 14.8 47 12.5 130 34.9
Eating 407 0.3 214 0.1 1 92 8.3 128 20.8 1 9 * 24.4 76 4.9 15 * 4.0 4 1 11.0
Needs assistance 298 0.2 149 0.1 150 6.5 108 17.5 10 * 12.9 * 5 5 3.6 9 * 2.5 * 30 8.0
Transferring 1,263 0.8 5 94 0.4 66 9 29.0 3 11 50.7 42 54.3 3 50 22.8 94 25.1 173 46.4
Needs assistance 802 0.5 342 0.2 459 19.9 250 40.8 26 33.0 227 14.8 43 11.4 121 32.5
Toileting 752 0.5 251 0.2 50 1 21.7 283 46.1 33 42.7 2 24 14.6 70 18.6 143 38.4
Needs assistance 456 0.3 152 0.1 304 13.2 210 34.2 15 * 19.6 * 11 2 7.3 27 7.1 84 22.5
Getting around inside 1,001 0.6 3 57 0.2 645 27.9 326 53.0 44 55.8 3 03 19.8 107 28.6 192 51.5
Needs assistance 533 0.3 202 0.1 330 14.3 196 31.9 18 * 23.3 149 9.7 3 2 8.4 8 9 23.7
Home-management activities (IADL)
Any IADL limitation 7,589 4.8 6,051 3.9 1,538 66.6 507 82.5 73 93.0 9 77 63.6 222 59.2 305 81.8
Needs assistance 6,265 3.9 4,893 3.1 1,372 59.4 468 76.2 69 88.6 8 59 56.0 194 51.8 288 77.3
No IADL limitation 151,580 95.2 150,808 96.1 7 72 33.4 107 17.5 5 * 7.0 * 558 36.4 1 53 40.8 68 18.2
Specific IADL limitations
Preparing meals 1,452 0.9 894 0.6 558 24.1 317 51.6 33 41.9 25 9 16.9 60 15.9 153 41.0
Needs assistance 1,185 0.7 716 0.5 4 69 20.3 272 44.2 29 37.7 21 3 13.9 41 11.0 142 38.1
Shopping 2,131 1.3 1,351 0.9 780 33.8 368 59.9 41 52.9 4 10 26.7 105 28.1 216 57.8
Needs assistance 1,832 1.2 1,147 0.7 685 29.7 327 53.3 3 8 49.0 356 23.2 9 1 24.2 2 01 53.9
Managing money 1,411 0.9 1,104 0.7 30 7 13.3 179 29.1 17 * 21.9 1 52 9.9 26 6.9 88 23.6
Needs assistance 1,233 0.8 964 0.6 2 69 11.6 154 25.1 16 * 20.1 * 134 8.7 23 6.2 85 22.9
Using the telephone 591 0.4 425 0.3 166 7.2 101 16.5 8 * 10.5 * 7 0 4.5 1 1 * 2.9 * 44 11.7
Needs assistance 444 0.3 312 0.2 132 5.7 87 14.1 7 * 8.7 * 53 3.5 2 * 0.6 * 34 9.2
Heavy housework 6,891 4.3 5,387 3.4 1,504 65.1 5 01 81.5 71 91.4 9 53 62.1 216 57.7 297 79.7
Needs assistance 5,595 3.5 4,287 2.7 1,308 56.6 442 71.9 65 83.5 8 22 53.5 184 48.9 272 72.9
Light housework 1,988 1.2 1,193 0.8 795 34.4 375 61.0 47 59.9 4 20 27.4 94 25.1 217 58.3
Needs assistance 1,639 1.0 958 0.6 6 80 29.5 331 53.9 38 48.3 34 9 22.8 80 21.4 195 52.4
ADL/IADL
Any ADL or IADL limitation 7,948 5.0 6,291 4.0 1,656 71.7 543 88.5 73 93.0 1,051 68.5 245 65.3 330 88.3
Needs assistance 6,538 4.1 5,087 3.2 1,452 62.8 497 81.0 70 89.4 9 11 59.3 201 53.7 302 81.0
No ADL/IADL limitation 151,221 95.0 150,567 96.0 65 4 28.3 71 11.5 5 * 7.0 * 48 4 31.5 130 34.7 4 4 11.7
Source: National Health Interview Survey on Disability, 1994–95
*Estimate has low statistical reliability (standard error exceeds 30 percent of estimate).
Disability Statistics Report 1452
Number % Number %
Number
% Number % Number %
Number
% Number %
Number
%
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s) (1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
(1000s)
All persons 31,245 100.0 26,879 100.0 4,366 100.0 897 100.0 64 100.0 3,200 100.0 1 55 100.0 1,421 100.0
Health status
Excellent 4,832 15.5 4,608 17.1 2 23 5.1 2 8 3.1 4 * 6.7 * 172 5.4 1 4 8.9 59 4.1
Very good 7,222 23.1 6,747 25.1 4 75 10.9 48 5.4 2 * 3.6 * 382 11.9 14 * 9.2 124 8.7
Good 10,398 33.3 9,249 34.4 1,148 26.3 160 17.8 19 30.0 88 7 27.7 3 7 23.6 310 21.8
Fair 5,822 18.6 4,519 16.8 1,303 29.8 244 27.2 18 27.5 98 3 30.7 4 4 28.3 421 29.6
Poor 2,745 8.8 1,568 5.8 1,177 27.0 4 06 45.3 21 32.2 7 48 23.4 46 30.0 48 9 34.4
Unknown 226 0.7 187 0.7 39 0.9 11 * 1.2 * 0 0.0 29 0.9 0 0.0 19 1.3
Hospitalization history
Discharged in prior 6 months 3,213 10.3 2,265 8.4 948 21.7 295 32.9 20 31.9 588 18.4 39 25.4 42 1 29.6
Hospitalization in prior year 5,257 16.8 3,810 14.2 1,447 33.1 409 45.6 2 9 44.8 964 30.1 49 31.9 635 44.7
Perceived disability
Self-perceived disability 5,624 18.0 3,189 11.9 2,435 55.8 7 10 79.2 52 81.8 1,646 51.4 1 03 66.8 92 2 64.9
Other-perceived disability 4,557 14.6 2,321 8.6 2,236 51.2 686 76.5 5 2 81.5 1,464 45.8 1 02 65.7 890 62.7
No perceived disability 25,135 80.4 23,419 87.1 1,716 39.3 139 15.5 8 * 12.0 * 1,407 44.0 4 1 26.6 417 29.3
Activity limitation
Unable to do major activity 3,228 10.3 1,785 6.6 1,443 33.0 594 66.2 29 44.8 801 25.0 61 39.6 66 4 46.7
Only limited in major activity 3,603 11.5 2,387 8.9 1,215 27.8 185 20.6 18 27.6 93 1 29.1 47 30.4 4 14 29.1
Limited only in other activity 4,951 15.8 4,050 15.1 901 20.6 5 7 6.3 14 21.6 78 5 24.5 2