When Walking Fails: Mobility Problems of Adults with Chronic Conditions / Edition 1

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Roughly one in ten adult Americans find their walking slowed by progressive chronic conditions like arthritis, back problems, heart and lung diseases, and diabetes. In this passionate and deeply informed book, Lisa I. Iezzoni describes the personal experiences of and societal responses to adults whose mobility makes it difficult for them to live as they wish—partly because of physical and emotional conditions and partly because of persisting societal and environmental barriers. Basing her conclusions on personal experience, a wealth of survey data, and extensive interviews with dozens of people from a wide social spectrum, Iezzoni explains who has mobility problems and why; how mobility difficulties affect people's physical comfort, attitudes, daily activities, and relationships with family and friends throughout their communities; strategies for improving mobility; and how the health care system addresses mobility difficulties, providing and financing services and assistive technologies. Iezzoni claims that, although strategies exist to improve mobility, many people do not know where to turn for advice. She addresses the need to inform policymakers about areas where changes will better accommodate people with difficulty walking. This straightforward and engaging narrative clearly demonstrates that improving people's ability to move freely and independently will enhance overall health and quality of life, not only for these persons, but also for society as a whole.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Approximately ten percent of adults in the United States have difficulty walking. Most of these people are served by our healthcare system, but they could be served better, argues Iezzoni, a physician, public health policy researcher, and multiple sclerosis patient who travels via motorized scooter. Addressing her book primarily to health policymakers and care providers, she also intends it as an advocacy tool for those who have difficulty walking and as an analysis of public health and insurance policies that impede citizen access to mobility. Iezzoni grounds her readable and compelling discussion with case histories and interviews of people who struggle with policy and environmental barriers in addition to their own physical impairments. She also discusses practical issues affecting daily life-the training of healthcare providers and comparisons of assistive devices like scooters and wheelchairs. As an accessible and informative look at an issue that touches so many, and as a critique of public policy that is evidently in need of major improvement, this is a valuable work for academic and public libraries. [Full details on the national health interview surveys that form the statistical basis for the author's discussions appear on the web at www.ucpress.edu/books/pages/9456/ 9456. append02.html.-Ed.]-Noemie Maxwell Vassilakis, King Cty. Lib. Syst., WA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520238190
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 6/10/2003
  • Series: California/Milbank Books on Health and the Public Series, #8
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 366
  • Sales rank: 527,740
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Lisa I. Iezzoni is Professor of Medicine at the Harvard Medical School and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Division of General Medicine and Primary Care. She is the editor of Risk Adjustment for Measuring Healthcare Outcomes (1997).

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations and Tables
1 Mobility Limits 1
2 Who has Mobility Difficulties 10
3 Sensations of Walking 23
4 Society's Views of Walking 47
5 How People Feel About their Difficulty Walking 66
6 At Home - with Family and Friends 83
7 Outside Home - at Work and in Communities 105
8 People Talking to their Physicians 127
9 Physicians Talking to their Patients 142
10 Physical and Occupational Therapy and Other Approaches 163
11 Ambulation Aids 181
12 Wheeled Mobility 197
13 Who will Pay? 223
14 What will be Paid for? 239
15 Final Thoughts 260
App. 1: Familiar Interviewees 273
App. 2: Selected Resources 281
Notes 297
References 319
Index 335
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