James H. Rimmer, Ph.D., Lakeshore Foundation Endowed Chair in Health Promotion and Rehabilitation Sciences, School of Health Professions,
University of Alabama at Birmingham.
The premise of this article is that, until recently, health promotion for people with disabilities has been a neglected area of interest on the part of the general health community. Today, researchers, funding agencies, and health care providers and consumers are leading an effort to establish higher-quality health care for the millions of Americans with disabilities. The aims of a health promotion program for people with disabilities are to reduce secondary conditions (eg, obesity, hypertension, pressure sores), to maintain functional independence, to provide an opportunity for leisure and enjoyment, and to enhance the overall quality of life by reducing environmental barriers to good health. A greater emphasis must be placed on community-based health promotion initiatives for people with disabilities in order to achieve these objectives. [Rimmer JH. Health promotion for people with disabilities: the emerging paradigm shift from disability prevention to prevention of secondary conditions. Phys Ther;1999;79:495-502.]