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Unmet needs among adults with disabilities

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In 2006, 2.7 million Canadian adults aged 15 and older with disabilities used or needed technical aids or specialized equipment, such as wheelchairs, Braille reading materials and communication keyboards, to help them perform daily activities. Among them, 61% had all the equipment they needed. However, 29% used such equipment but needed more, while 10% had none of the equipment they required.

Adults with the most severe disabilities, of which there were 511,670 in 2006, were the least likely to have all their needs met for such aids or equipment. Individuals with a learning limitation such as dyslexia had more unmet needs than individuals with any other disability.

The cost of purchasing or maintaining assistive devices was the most frequent reason given for unmet needs. Even with assistive technology, half of all people with disabilities experienced difficulty participating in everyday activities at least once a week or more.