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Disabil Rehabil. 2007 Oct 30-Nov 15;29(20-21):1625-33.

Constructive Functional Diversity: a new paradigm beyond disability and impairment.

Author information

  • Diversityworks Group and Trust, Herne Bay, Auckland, New Zealand. philip@diversityworks.co.nz

Abstract

AIMS OF THE PAPER:

This article presents a more dynamic and constructive paradigm than the current dominant ones (for example medical or social models), to describe and change the impact of impairment and disability. The reflections contained are inspired by personal and professional frustration with the existing polarized ideology of human function, which fails to adequately describe the diversity of physiological and psychosocial function amongst people. It aims to provoke and inspire dialogue about our current paradigm of human function in relation to value and capacity.

KEY FINDINGS AND IMPLICATIONS:

Within this paper: I critique society's biases regarding of functional deficit relative to the subconscious fear of losing function; I question the polarity of the negatively framed language of impairment and disability; I offer constructive, creative 'solutions' to describe the experience of atypical function. In so doing, an entirely new language of diverse human function and a concept of Constructive Functional Diversity (CFD) is proposed, which includes a complex yet logical array of modes and outcomes of function.

CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS:

Finally I suggest the benefits of a more dynamic paradigm of functional change in enhancing rehabilitative outcomes, including client-directed practice.

PMID:
17896220
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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