Deakin University

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Can we achieve accountability for long-term outcomes?

journal contribution
posted on 1996-01-01, 00:00 authored by Roy Batterham, D R Dunt, P B Disler
Objective: To explore options for the development of a set of indicators to assess the long-term outcomes achieved by all people with a given disabling condition in a given population. Data Sources: The review draws on empirical studies of predictive indicators, theoretical literature on long-term recovery processes, and literature from administrative science on the use of indicators in accountability systems. Study Selection: Studies were selected that explicitly sought to relate short-term and long-term outcomes or that explored the mediating factors in the relationship between impairment, disability, and handicap. Data Extraction: The focus of the review is on (1) empirical evidence of the relationship between short- and long-term outcomes, particularly in causal claims, and (2) theoretical analyses of the factors that mediate this relationship. Data Synthesis: Evidence is presented that certain outcome states can be considered thresholds that make the outcome usable improvement. Such thresholds could meet the construct validity criteria necessary for measures that are to be used as indicators in an accountability system. The interaction between psychological and physical factors in setting thresholds means that both objective and subjective indicators are required in an indicator system. Conclusions: It may well be possible to develop a parsimonious set of population-based outcome indicators for people with disabilities. The key safeguards required are construct validity and the involvement of people with disabilities in both the development and use of the indicators.



Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation






1219 - 1225



Publication classification

CN.1 Other journal article