Project summary; Cluster 3 - Country Implementation
The AT2030 programme tests ‘what works’ to improve access to Assistive Technology (AT) and is investing £20 million over five years to support solutions with a focus on innovative products, new service models, and global capacity support. The programme is funded by UK aid and led by the Global Disability Innovation Hub (GDI Hub). Under Cluster 3, the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) partnered with country governments to identify opportunities to drive AT availability and affordability.
Objective of the project
CHAI’s work was organized around three objectives:
- Research and market tools: deepen research and analysis on specific AT and identify early opportunities to accelerate access to specific products; develop a market-shaping plan to sustainably increase access to high quality, low-cost priority assistive products; and develop market shaping tools and opportunistically engage with suppliers.
- Pilots: pilot testing of market interventions through engagement with specific countries and opportunities. These are countries that have prioritized AT and have a plan for increasing access.
- Country Capacity Assessments: support the World Health Organization (WHO) in developing a tool for use in country capacity assessment (CCA) and implement this in seven countries to improve a country's understanding of current AT landscape and support program design.
To date, through CHAI’s work nearly 100,000 people directly benefited from the programme, either through delivery of AT or capacity building, and nearly 55 million persons with disabilities were impacted by new national AT policies or action plans.
Under AT2030, CHAI has demonstrated how market shaping can drive better access to AT:
- Improving transparency to direct investments in AT: There is limited comprehensive data and information on the market barriers to access AT in low-and middle-income countries (LMICs). As a result, structural issues are not tackled in a coordinated manner.
- Catalyzing change through assessing and building in-country public sector capacity for AT: In most countries, the provision of AT has been fragmented with a lack of collaboration between stakeholders involved, such as ministries and NGOs. Under AT2030, CHAI helped establish a concerted effort and strengthen government leadership.
- Ensuring more efficient and sustainable AT provision: the delivery of AT services has not been well integrated into existing government systems.
- Unlocking government financing for AT: AT provision has traditionally been un(der)funded by LMIC governments, making most products and services unaffordable to many. Using actual, available data on the needs and costs, CHAI worked with governments to motivate for additional budgets.
- Creating tools to replicate ‘what works’: Few publications and implementation tools exist that discuss practical approaches to successfully build government capacity. Under AT2030, CHAI documented learnings for replication by other partners. CHAI has worked with GDI Hub and the WHO to finalize the AT-Assessment Capacity tool and a suite of supportive resources, which was published by the WHO in November 2020.