The Tonga Red Cross Society has in partnership with the Disability Advisory Committee (DACTION), completed the National Disability Identification Survey, in the Kingdom of Tonga. This survey was aimed at identifying the prevalence of disability, major causes of disability, the level of involvement of people with disabilities in the community, educational and employment sectors, and the needs of people with disabilities in Tonga.
This survey has identified 2782 people with disabilities in Tonga, which represents approximately 2.8% of the total population. This is significantly lower than the disability figures of 10% of total populations estimated by the United Nations (UN) and the World Health Organisation (WHO). This discrepancy is partly because the survey did not include people with mild impairments. This is also due to the social stigma attached to having a disability in Tonga which prevented some people taking part in the survey. Because of this, the given results should be read as a conservative estimate of the actual number of people with disabilities in Tonga
Types of Disability by age brackets
A total of 4803 disabilities were identified.
Description of under-reporting of disability prevalence when not using the ICF approach
The above graph compares the data collected during the Pilot survey in ‘Eua, which utilised the ICF approach to disability identification, to the data collected in all the other island groups, which did not use this approach.