Australian Government: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare METeOR Home Page

Activity—functioning, disability and health

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Help on this termGlossary Item
Synonymous names:Help on this termActivity
METeOR identifier:Help on this term327296
Registration status:Help on this termHealth, Standard 29/11/2006
Disability, Standard 13/08/2015
Community Services (retired), Standard 01/03/2005
Definition:Help on this term

In the context of health, an activity is the execution of a task or action by an individual.

Context:Help on this term

'Activities and participation' is one of three components that define the concept 'Disability', along with 'Body functions and structures' and 'Environmental factors'. 'Activities and participation' is also encompassed within the concept 'Functioning'.

The concept 'Activity', as defined here and as measured in the metadata item Activity difficulty level code (ICF) N, may be relevant to people and human services not related to disability.

Collection and usage attributes

Comments:Help on this term

Activity limitations are difficulties an individual has in the execution of an activity.

The performance of an activity is what the individual does in his or her current environment. The environment includes all aspects of the physical, social and attitudinal world. Activity limitation varies with the environment and is assessed in relation to a particular environment and in the absence or presence of assistance, including aids and equipment.

In time, a related and more generic data element may be developed. In the meantime, the addition of 'functioning, disability and health' to the concept of 'ability' indicates that the current concept is based on the concept and framework developed by World Health Organization to assist in the classification and description of functioning and disability, as contained in the ICF.

The ICF recognises two constructs that can be used with 'Activities and Participation': performance and capacity. 'Performance' is what the person does in their usual environment. 'Capacity' describes 'an individual's ability to execute a task or an action in a standardised environment, where a standardised environment may be:

  • an actual environment commonly used for assessment in test settings; or
  • in cases where this is not possible, an assumed environment which can be thought to have a uniform impact' (WHO 2001).

The standardised environment has not been generally operationalised. However, the recognition of these two constructs in the ICF underscores the importance of recording the environment in which activities are being performed.

This glossary item is based on the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF). The ICF was endorsed by the World Health Assembly in 2001 as a reference member of the WHO Family of International Classifications and of the Australian Family of Health and Related Classifications (endorsed by the National Health Information Management Group in 2002).
The ICF provides a framework for the description of human functioning and disability. The components of ICF are defined in relation to a health condition. A health condition is an ‘umbrella term for disease (acute or chronic), disorder, injury or trauma’ (WHO 2001). A health condition may be recorded, for example, as Episode of care principal diagnosis, code (ICD-10-AM 3rd Ed) ANN{.N[N} and Episode of care additional diagnosis, code (ICD-10-AM 3rd Ed) ANN{.N[N}.

Source and reference attributes

Origin:Help on this term

World Health Organization (WHO) 2001. ICF: International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health. Geneva: WHO

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2003. ICF Australian User Guide Version 1.0. Canberra: AIHW

Reference documents:Help on this termFurther information on the ICF can be found in the ICF itself and the ICF Australian User Guide (AIHW 2003) and the following websites
• WHO ICF website
http://www.who.int/classifications/icf/en
• Australian Collaborating Centre ICF website
http://www.aihw.gov.au/disability/icf/index.html

Relational attributes

Related metadata references:Help on this term

Supersedes Activity - functioning, disability and health, version 1, DEC, NCSDD, NCSIMG, Superseded 01/03/2005.pdf (17.9 KB)

Metadata items which use this glossary item:Help on this term

Activities and participation code (ICF 2001) AN[NNN] Health, Standard 29/11/2006
Disability, Standard 13/08/2015
Community Services (retired), Standard 16/10/2006

Activities and participation code (ICF 2001) N[NNN] Community Services (retired), Superseded 16/10/2006

Activity difficulty level code (ICF 2001) N Community Services (retired), Superseded 16/10/2006

Activity difficulty level code (ICF 2001) N Health, Standard 29/11/2006
Disability, Standard 13/08/2015
Community Services (retired), Standard 16/10/2006

Disability Housing assistance, Standard 01/03/2005
Health, Superseded 29/06/2016
Disability, Standard 07/10/2014
Children and Families, Standard 22/11/2016
Community Services (retired), Standard 01/03/2005

Disability Health, Standard 29/06/2016
Disability, Standard 28/09/2016

Disability grouping code N[N] Community Services (retired), Superseded 08/05/2006

Extent of environmental factors influence code (ICF 2001) [X]N Community Services (retired), Superseded 16/10/2006

Extent of environmental factors influence code (ICF 2001) [X]N Health, Standard 29/11/2006
Disability, Standard 13/08/2015
Community Services (retired), Standard 16/10/2006

Functioning and Disability DSS Health, Standard 29/11/2006
Disability, Standard 13/08/2015
Community Services (retired), Standard 16/10/2006

Person—disability group, code N Community Services (retired), Standard 01/03/2005

My items Help on this term
Download Help on this term