Management of the disability common fund: challenges and impact on the lives of persons with disabilities in Kumasi Metropolis of Ghana

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November, 2015
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This study aimed to assess the impact of the DCF on the socio-economic lives of PWDs and recommend ways to improve the programme. Cross-sectional study with qualitative methods was conducted with PWDs enrolled in the DCF in Kumasi Metropolis. Data were obtained from 125 respondents (120 PWD beneficiaries and fund management committee) using non probability purposive sampling technique. Open- and close-ended questionnaire were data collection instruments and analysed using Statistical Package Service Solution version 20. Results were generated through descriptive and analytical statistics. The findings show that education; employment and income levels were too low among PWDs to impact positively on their socio-economic status. Although the mean monthly income of respondents was GHC 171.62, 56.7% earned between GHC50.00 to GHC100.00, below the national minimum wage whereas at May, 2014 was GHC180.00 per month. Mean monthly income was higher among respondents with tertiary qualification than those with no formal education (GHC369.00/GHC90.94; p=0.03). About 59.3% of PWDs had received the fund for only one year. The mean amount of money received from the fund was GHC 171.62. Although the funds were insufficient for PWDs yet PWDs agreed that it helped in their business and farming activities, payment of children school fees and assist in purchasing assistive devices. Monthly expenditure on food indicated that 85.7% of respondents paid between GHC180 and GHC600, healthcare was between GHC5 and GHC28. Education cost them between GHC100 and GHC300. Challenges associated with managing the DCF ranged from the demographics, socio-economic status of the respondents to the irregular payment of fund by the Common Fund Administrator into the District Assemblies Common Fund. The study suggests efforts to institute measures to promote education and employment among PWDs, increase the DCF from 2% to 5% to meet the excess application. Future research should also focus much on the financial risk protection offered by other social protection strategies like Livelihood Empowerment against Poverty for PWDs.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Community Health, School of Medical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science Disability, Rehabilitation, and Development,