Encyclopedia of Public Health

2008 Edition
| Editors: Wilhelm Kirch

Rehabilitation Delivery

  • Gernot Lenz
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-5614-7_2967


The World Health Organization defines rehabilitation as an active process by which those disabled by injury or disease achieve full recovery, or, if full recovery is not possible, realize their optimal physical, mental, and social potential and are integrated into their most appropriate environment. This refers to people with chronic illnesses, after trauma, and with congenital disabilities.

Basic Characteristics


There are around 600 million people with disabilities worldwide. The disabilities may be physical, sensory, and/or mental conditions and limit the way the disabled persons carry out their daily activities. Many disabled people live in developing nations and do not have access to rehabilitation services of any kind. Internationally, there have been efforts to improve the quality of life for disabled people and their families in recent year, which are reflected in a stronger emphasis on social elements instead of predominantly the medical perspective.  comm...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gernot Lenz
    • 1
  1. 1.Forschungsverbund Public Health Sachsen-Sachsen Anhalt e. V., Medizinische FakultätTechnische UniversitätDresdenGermany