Some Specific Conditions
A brief description of some of the medical conditions that are identified in the definition of other health impairment are listed below. However, they should not be viewed as the only medical conditions that have the potential to adversely impact the academic achievement of a student.
National Association of Special Education Teachers is an organization dedicated to meeting the needs of special education teachers and those preparing for the field of special education teaching. It identifies additional medical conditions that might meet the criteria for other health impairment.
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) is a condition that can make it hard for a person to sit still, control behavior and pay attention. These difficulties usually begin before the age of seven, but often may not be noticed until the child is older.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) published by the American Psychiatric Association (2000), there are three types of AD/HD:
- inattentive – where the person can't seem to get focused or stay focused on a task or activity
- hyperactive-impulsive – where the person is very active and often acts without thinking
- combined – where the person is inattentive, impulsive and too active
- Resource Guide on Students with ADHD (PDF) – This guidance clarifying the obligation of schools to provide students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with equal educational opportunity under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 was issued by The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR).
- Identifying and Treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Resource for School And Home (PDF) – A resource guide published by The U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) covering how ADHD is identified and treated, with helpful hints on how to improve the quality of life at home and at school
- Teaching Children wtih Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Instructional Strategies and Practices (PDF) – Three main components of a successful strategy for educating children with AD/HD are academic interventions, behavioral interventions, and classroom accommodations
- The National Resource Center on AD/HD: A Program of CHADD – Evidence-based information about all aspects of AD/HD
- Attention Deficit Disorders Association – Southern Region
- AdhdNews.com is a support web for ADHD children and adults.
Diabetes, Epilepsy and Heart Disease
- Implementing Special Education: Students With Special Needs (PDF) – From the Virginia School Health Guidelines, an overview of the role of the school nurses and other school health personnel in identifying and serving students with special needs.
Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin, the hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy needed for daily life. The The American Diabetes Association recognizes two overall goals for a child with diabetes under IDEA:
- To provide the child with any needed assistance to keep up with schoolwork that the child either missed because he or she was involved with diabetes care, or had difficulty understanding because he or she was experiencing high or low blood sugar levels; and
- To keep the child safe and maintain optimal learning ability by providing the means to keep his or her blood sugar levels in the best control possible.
The Epilepsy Foundation of America defines epilepsy as a physical condition that occurs when there is a sudden, brief change in how the brain works. Improperly functioning brain cells can cause epileptic seizures marked by alterations in a person's consciousness, movement, or actions for a short time.
- National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY) – Information on disabilities in infants, toddlers, children and youth, IDEA, NCLB and effective educational practices
The two types of heart disease in children are "congenital" and acquired." Present at birth, congenital heart disease (also known as a congenital heart defect), can include such conditions as patent ductus arteriosis, atrial septal fefects, and ventricular septal defects. Diseases such as Kawasaki disease, rheumatic fever, and infective endocarditis are categorized as acquired heart disease, and typically develops sometime during childhood.
- How to Help Your Kids – From the American Heart Association, information on diseases, conditions and treatments related to children's health