Census moves towards healthcare questions

When the 2010 Census worker knocks on your door you will be required to answer more than the customary household questions if the recently introduced Bill is passed. New questions about your daily living may be added.

The “Disability Data Modernization Act” requires that “standard functional ability” questionnaires be used in the taking of any decennial census (the ten year census) of population or American Community Survey.

In any questionnaire distributed or otherwise used, the Katz Basic Activities of Daily Living (ADL) scale and the Lawton-Brody Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) scale shall be included to provide a reliable indicator of need for long-term care.

These indexes are said to be two of the most widely accepted and used indices of function by hospitals, researchers, federal agencies and Long-Term Care facilities for 40 years.

This Bill, which has been referred to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs was introduced by the (now former) Senator Mel Martinez (R-FL), Mel Martinez served a US Senator for Florida between January 2005 and September 2009 and will be resuming his legal career. Martinez rose to the US Senate as the first Cuban-American.

Types of questions included in a Katz ADL scale revolve around an individuals’ ability to bathe, dress, feed, toilette and transfer oneself.

Questions in the Lawton-Brody IADL scale include ability to manage finances, dispense own medication, use a phone, shop, prepare food, perform housework, laundry and transportation abilities.

An internet search on your favorite search engine for “Katz ADL” and “Lawton-Brody IADL” will bring up the activity questions. (or view a sample here)

Read the bill S 1127


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