Twenty percent (19.7%) of Delawareans report having a disability that prevents them from doing things they want to do (BRFSS 2012). For some people with disabilities, getting quality health care is not always within reach. If you have a disability or care for a person with a disability, you may face barriers to: getting primary health care, or access to dental check-ups or preventive screenings such as a mammogram, colonoscopy, pap smears or prostate exams, or creating an accessible exercise routine, or getting nutrition information that is suited for you.
Healthy Delawareans with Disabilities (HDWD) is charged with working to improve the health status of people with disabilities in Delaware. The project is a cooperative agreement between the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Center for Disabilities Studies (CDS) at the University of Delaware (UD), and a partnership with the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services. This program focuses on improving the health of Delawareans with disabilities through state-based public health programs. In 2015, a collaboration of stakeholders released the Plan to Achieve Health Equity for Delawareans with Disabilities. This plan is a roadmap for system change to ensure access and positive health outcomes for individuals with disabilities in Delaware.
Through collaborative partnerships, act as a catalyst for systems change to make health & wellness programs more accessible and inclusive.
All individuals with disabilities in Delaware will live active and healthy lives and will have the resources, supports, programs, and services necessary to do so.
Areas of Expertise
We create system‐level change through active participation on state‐wide councils, committees, and workgroups that address health and disability issues and the implementation of the goals and objectives of the Plan to Achieve Health Equity for Delawareans with Disabilities. Read the plan online or contact HDWD for a copy of the plan.
We provide technical assistance to healthcare and fitness providers to improve accessibility and inclusion of individuals with disabilities.
Education and Training
We educate, share resources and information, and raise awareness about health topics through HDWD’s interactive website www.gohdwd.org and email newsletters to individuals with disabilities, family members, professionals, policymakers, and legislators.
- Cultural competency (Disability 101)
- Effective Communication
- Maximizing Access: Smart Choices in Equipment and Facility Design
- Inclusive Health Promotion
Research and Policy
We compile data and provide analysis of issues that relate to disability and health in Delaware. Read The Current Landscape for Disability and Health in Delaware: Public Health Assessment Report Summary 2015.
Additional Focus Areas
- Inclusive emergency preparedness
- Healthcare transition for young adults
- Accessible recreation and fitness
- Oral health best practices tool kit for residential facilities
The HDWD project is supported by Grant/Cooperative Agreement Number DD000953‐02 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD).