The Social Welfare Bureau’s (IAS) Social Solidarity Department Head Choi Sio Un said Thursday that the government would revise the current tools and practices to assess the level of disabilities resident may have with the help of experts from the mainland. He said that the revised assessment tools were expected to be put into use by the end of this year.
According to The Macau Post Daily, Choi made the comments after attending a Chinese New Year celebration organised by the Macau Association of Parents of the Mentally Handicapped, at a centre run by the association in Areia Preta.
About 200 mentally disabled people took part in the activity, complete with a lion dance, martial arts display and singing.
The government has established a string of assessment criteria for the levels of disability that residents may suffer from. In 2011, six kinds of impairment on four levels were laid down. The assessments allow disabled residents to apply for a disability card, which allows them to get an annual disability allowance from the government while all medical services in public hospitals and health centres are free.
The six kinds of impairment are visual, audio, verbal, physical, intellectual and mental while the four levels are called slight, moderate, severe and profound.
Choi said that experts from the mainland would start to review the current assessment tools next month and were expected to come up with revised criteria and tools by the end of this year.
Choi said during this period the experts and the government would consult various social organisations in the city about how to fine-tune the assessment criteria, tools and practices.
Choi emphasised that the revised criteria and tools to assess the level of disabilities would not be completely new but just a “refinement” of the current criteria and tools.(macaunews)