|Note for the Press No 19
20 August 1999
|INTERNATIONAL CLASSIFICATION OF FUNCTIONING AND DISABILITY: A NEW
RELEASE FROM WHO
The World Health Organization (WHO) has released a new version of the International Classification of Functioning and Disability (Beta-2 version of ICIDH-2) for field trials. This is the last version to be tested and commented on throughout the world before it is finalized and submitted to the World Health Assembly in 2001. Field trials are due to finish in July 2000 and this version is open for comments by all individuals and organizations.
This is the first time that any type of international classification system is open to comment and possible amendment via the web. The classification is available in two versions, the Full and Short Versions, and both can be downloaded from the WHO website (http://www.who.int/icidh) and commented on category by category.
This classification, originally developed in 1980 as a manual for consequences of disease, complements the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10) and now deals with functional states (i.e., mobility, social integration, etc.) associated with health conditions. It recognises the fact that a diagnosis of diseases and disorders, while important for clinical and public health needs, is not sufficient to describe the functional status of the individual and also to predict, guide and plan the various needs of such an individual.
The overall aim of the ICIDH-2 classification is to provide a unified and standard language and framework for the description of human functioning and disability as an important component of health. The classification covers any disturbance in terms of "functional states" associated with health conditions at body, individual and society levels. ICIDH-2 organizes information according to three dimensions: body level; individual level; and society level.
A list of environmental factors forms part of the classification. Environmental factors have an impact on all three dimensions and are organized from the individual's most immediate environment to the general environment.
ICIDH-2 is a multi-purpose classification designed to serve various disciplines and different sectors. It aims:
The Beta-2 version has been developed after extensive international field trials of the Beta-1 version over the last two years in which a large number of centres from all regions of WHO took part. Disability groups and associations were actively involved in the revision process.
ICIDH-2 is not just about people with disabilities; it is about all people. The functional states associated with all health conditions at body, individual or society level can be described using ICIDH-2: ICIDH-2 has universal application.
Although ICIDH-2 is inherently a health-related classification, it is also used by other sectors such as insurance, social security, labour, education, economics, social policy and general legislation development. It has also been accepted as one of the United Nations social classifications and is referred to in and incorporates the United Nations Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities. ICIDH-2 thus provides an appropriate instrument for the implementation of stated international human rights mandates as well as national legislation.
Hard copies will soon be available from:
Marketing and Dissemination
These can also be ordered on the Website (http://www.who.int/dsa) or at e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The classification is being translated in all the major languages of the world and information on these is available from the WHO.
For further information, journalists can contact Gregory Hartl, Office of Press and Public Relations, WHO, Geneva. Telephone (41 22) 791 4458. Fax (41 22) 791 4858. Email: email@example.com . Or: Dr. T. Bedirhan Üstün, Assessment, Classification and Epidemiology Group, WHO, Geneva, Tel (41 22) 791 3609. Fax (41 22) 791 4885. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
All WHO Press Releases, Fact Sheets and Features as well as other information on this subject can be obtained on Internet on the WHO home page http://www.who.ch/