UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Rehabilitation of the handicapped : a comparative study of the rehabilitation programmes of the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Workmen's Compensation Board of British Columbia Watson, Hartley William


The term “rehabilitation” is used in many fields to indicate a restoration of various functions to an individual. In social work and related fields the restoration of the handicapped individual in the physical and economic areas has taken precedence over the restoration and development of the individual in his social environment. The lasting value of rehabilitation lies in the adequate functioning of a disabled individual as a member of his family and community. This study examines the rehabilitation programme of the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Workmen’s Compensation Board of British Columbia. The rehabilitation programmes have been divided into what is called the elements of a rehabilitation programme : the rehabilitation process, rehabilitation services, rehabilitation personnel and rehabilitation maintenance allowances and auxiliary aids. These elements have formed the basis for discussion of the legislative framework and the facilities of each agency. Selected cases have been used to indicate how the rehabilitation process operates in each agency. The availability of a large amount of funds and a favourable state of public feeling have allowed the Department of Veterans Affairs to inaugurate what is considered to be the best rehabilitation programme in Canada. The medical and training aspects of Workmen’s Compenstion Board’s programme are comparable to that of the Department of Veterans Affairs. They have not carried their programme into the area of psycho-social rehabilitation to the same extent as the Department of Veterans Affairs. Some points are also set forth around which further research and investigation could take place.

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