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Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities 

Section V. Prevalence and Service Rate: Need Ratio Projections of Unmet Need

Service Rate: Need Ratio of Primary Disability Categories

“Service Rate: Need Ratio” refers to the number of individuals with a specific disability served as a percentage of the total number who could potentially be served; this is also known as a penetration rate. The total number who could potentially be served refers to estimates of working age (15 to 64) individuals with disabilities looking for work. In order to accurately reflect the VR needs of individuals by disability that are actively seeking work, the working age population was utilized in these estimates. This is particularly crucial when considering the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimate that less than 2 percent of individuals age 65 and older are actively seeking work, or even marginally attached to the labor force. The number of individuals that are looking for work is impacted by many factors. The formula for calculating the Service Rate: Need Ratio is:

A × B = C
A = Estimated population. Projected population age 15 and older was obtained from the U.S. Census American Community Survey 2016 – 5-year projection data.
B = Prevalence rate for a specific disability.
C = Estimated number of individuals who potentially experience a particular disability.


C × D = E
D = Estimated percentage of individuals in the working age population with disabilities who are not working. The estimated percentage not working was obtained by subtracting the estimated employment rate from 100 percent.
E = Estimated number of working age individuals with disabilities who are not working.


E × F = G
F = Estimated percentage seeking employment that could benefit from OOD VR services. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggest that 9.2 percent of working age individuals with disabilities who are not working are unemployed, meaning they were actively seeking work in the four weeks prior to the 2017 survey.
G = Estimated number of working age individuals with disabilities seeking employment that could benefit from OOD VR services.


Number Served by OOD / G × 100 = Service Rate: Need Ratio


The link below provides access to interactive maps illustrating estimated service rate: need ratios for the six major OOD categories of disability by county, as well as the service rate: need ratio when all impairment categories are combined. Counties are categorized into one of six groups representing a continuum of need from lowest to highest. The darker shades of blue represent a better alignment of resources in meeting service needs, and lighter shades represent areas where greater opportunity exists for OOD. (Note: this data is also available in HTML format by clicking the following link: Service Rate: Need Ratio HTML Table.)  Additional graphics are included illustrating the breakdown of OOD participants by age group and race in comparison to all Ohio working age individuals with disabilities who are actively seeking work. 

OOD Service Rate: Need Ratio Map

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