Digital Technology in Disability Services

The Digital Technology in Disability Services project explored the experience of using digital technologies to access and provide disability services and supports in Ireland during the Covid-19 pandemic, from the perspective of disabled people, their families and service providers. Specifically, we were interested in digital technologies that allowed remote interaction between service users and service providers in real-time. These technologies include mobile devices such as smartphones and online platforms and applications that allow video, voice and content sharing.

What we did

The project was conducted in collaboration with the Health Service Executive (HSE)’s National Clinical Programme for People with Disability. We used a multiple case study design to address the aim of this study.


We interviewed service users, parents and service providers from three online services across Ireland.

Stakeholder workshop

We co-hosted a stakeholder workshop with the National Clinical Programme for People with Disability to translate findings into guidance on implementing online disability services and supports.

The team

The research team included collaborators from RCSI, the Central Remedial Clinic, HSE, UCD, Queen’s University Belfast, Brunel University London, and King’s College London.

The research team was:

Dr Jennifer Ryan, Dr Jennifer Fortune, Dr Manjula Manikandan, Sarah Harrington, Dr Owen Hensey, Dr Claire Kerr, Professor Thilo Kroll, Dr Grace Lavelle, Dr Meriel Norris, Mary Owens, Dr Aisling Walsh, Michael Walsh, Professor Mac MacLachlan.

The Digital Technology in Disability Services project was carried out with the support of the UCB Community Health Fund managed by the King Baudouin Foundation.