People choose to live in rural America because it is home to them. They feel like they fit in rural communities based on shared values and other similarities to their rural neighbors. They continue to live in rural communities despite the challenges associated with having limited resources to help meet daily needs (e.g., public transportation). The demands of living in a rural environment can be particularly challenging when rural people experience some kind of impairment (e.g., difficulty walking, seeing, hearing or thinking).
Little is known about how impairments become disabling for rural people over time. For example, do impairments lead to loss of income, which is the biggest problem faced by rural people? Do inaccessible rural communities simply discourage participation? In this study, we will examine 4-year outcomes of rural people with disabilities based on characteristics they disclose using a paper and pencil survey. The survey will measure important characteristics like secondary conditions (e.g., pain and fatigue), psychological states (e.g., depression and hope), social circumstances (social activities and perceived social support) and environmental barriers (e.g., accessibility, climate, etc.). We will use scores for each characteristic to predict how much people participate in community and how that participation changes over time.
In addition to input from rural people with disabilities on the development, implementation and analysis of these data, Dr. Margaret Stineman, author of the biopsycho-ecological model for physical medicine and rehabilitation (Stineman & Streim, 2010), will serve as technical advisor. We anticipate developing numerous fact sheets, progress reports and journal articles to describe results from this study.
- Project dates: Dates: 2013-2018
- Funded by: National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research Grant No. H133B130028
- Principal staff: Craig Ravesloot, Ph.D., Tom Seekins, Ph.D., Tracy Boehm, M.P.H., Tannis Hargrove, M.S., Lillie Greiman, M.A.
- Related projects: