National Research Center for Parents with Disabilities


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'I challenge them a bit': Encounters between Parents with Disabilities and the Medical Institution'I challenge them a bit': Encounters between parents with disabilities and the medical institution

Wednesday, March 6, 2024 | 12pm
Heller 163 and via Zoom
Lunch will be provided

In this lecture, Florencia Herrera and Andrea Rojas explore how barriers, particularly those of an attitudinal nature, are reflected in concrete encounters between parents with disabilities and medical personnel and hamper care for their children or during pregnancy.

People with disabilities face particular additional barriers of access to health care. Drs. Herrera and Rojas explore how these barriers increase when parents with disabilities require medical attention for their children. Using the small story research technique, they analyzed 38 interviews with disabled parents conducted as part of a qualitative-narrative study in Chile. They identified stories in which the participants describe encounters with the medical institution in which they are invisibilized and disempowered. A medical model of disability, which actively ignores how to interact with people with disabilities, prevails among health personnel. Parents with disabilities irritate the medical institution because they do not have ‘standard’ bodies and are in the position of the carers of others (their children), rather than that of people who require care. These parents develop strategies to resist the way they are treated, making extra efforts to obtain medical attention for their children.

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