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Glossary/list of abbreviations

2017: Dementia as a disability? Implications for ethics, policy and practice


doing good whilst trying to balance possible benefits against risks and costs.



abbreviation for the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which came into force in 2006.




a set of symptoms, including loss of memory, mood changes, and problems with communication and reasoning. There are many causes of dementia, the most common being Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia. Dementia is a progressive condition. This means that symptoms become more severe over time and that people with dementia typically need support and eventually care as their dementia advances.



“results from the interaction between persons with impairments and attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinders their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others” (Source: CRPD 2006, Preamble e).




how we think and communicate about people, things, the social organisation of society, and the relationships among and between all three. Discourse typically emerges out of social institutions like media and politics (amongst others), and by virtue of giving structure and order to language and thought, it structures and orders our lives, relationships with others, and society (Cole 2017).


Equity and justice

treating people equally and fairly (e.g. ensuring that they have the same opportunities and access to goods and services) and that benefits, risks and costs are fairly distributed.


rendered uniform or similar.


of the same or a similar kind of nature; having a uniform structure or characteristics.



any loss or limitation, albeit physical (e.g. loss of limbs), physiological (e.g. kidney disease), cognitive (e.g. Alzheimer’s disease), sensory (e.g. loss of hearing or vision), psychological (e.g. behavioural problems), or mental (e.g. psychosis) in nature, that may contribute to disability.


the way in which people are never fully independent and always rely in some ways on others.



the interconnected nature of social categorisations such as race, class, and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage (Source: Oxford Living Dictionary).




abbreviation of “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and other minority sexual orientation and gender groups (apart from heterosexual and cisgender groups31)”, typically used as a self-designation and typically covering anyone who does not consider themselves to be heterosexual or whose gender identity does not match the sex that they were assigned at birth.


not doing what might be harmful or hurt somebody.



a philosophical and theoretical framework or school of thought with underlying theories, laws, assumptions and generalisations which influence the way we make sense of a particular issue (e.g. in the field of dementia, disability, research or psychotherapy). If we think of the phrase “thinking inside the box”, the paradigm might be the box.


caused by or related to a disease.



Last Updated: Tuesday 13 February 2018


  • Acknowledgements

    The discussion paper “Dementia as a disability? Implications for ethics, policy and practice” received funding under an operating grant from the European Union’s Health Programme (2014–2020).
  • European Union