Driving affordability & availability of AT: Developing product narratives to guide sector investments

Clinton Health Access Initiative
Oct. 31, 2020

Context

AT provision has traditionally been fragmented and under resourced.

Historically, AT has been an under-resourced and fragmented sector. Only a few bilateral donors, such as USAID, have been active in the space and these funders have a specific focus on wheelchairs, prosthetics, and vision. An initial analysis of the sector showed that faith-based organizations, corporate social responsibility programs of AT suppliers, and family foundations have attempted to fill the gap, but are typically also focused only on one area.1 They often provide products through donations rather than strengthening public systems to deliver products and the related services necessary such as repairs and training on use.


New large initiatives launched to improve access to AT


The global AT community needs to leverage the capabilities and resources of the public, private and non-profit sectors. Two initiatives were launched in 2018 at the Global Disability Summit: 1) the AT2030 programme, a five year, GBP £20 million investment by UK aid, led by GDI Hub to test ‘what works’ to improve access to AT; and 2) ATscale, the Global Partnership for Assistive Technology, a cross-sector partnership to catalyse change to reach 500 million more people with the AT that they need by 2030. To achieve this goal, ATscale aims to mobilize global stakeholders to develop an enabling ecosystem for access to AT and to shape the markets, in line with a unified strategy.

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