Public health, innovation, intellectual property and trade

Global Cooperation on Assistive Technology (GATE)

WHO estimates that more than one billion people (mostly older people and people with disabilities) are in need of one or more assistive products. With populations ageing and the rise in noncommunicable diseases, this number is expected to increase to beyond two billion by 2050. Currently, only one in ten people in need have access. To address the substantial gap between the need for and provision of assistive technology, WHO established the Global Cooperation on Assistive Technology (GATE).

Improving access to assistive technology for everyone, everywhere.

fact buffet

Fact sheet on Assistive Technology

1 in 10people have access to the assistive technology they need

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Assistive Technology change lives

1 billionpeople need assistive technology today

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About GATE

5 PPeople, policy, provision, products and personnel

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The Global Report on Effective Access to Assistive Technology was requested by the 71st World Health Assembly within the resolution Improving Access to Assistive Technology.

The first Consultation to inform the development of the Global Report was held in Geneva on 22 and 23 August 2019.

Seventy-first World Health Assembly has adopted the resolution Improving access to assistive technology.

The adoption of the resolution represents a milestone in ensuring access to assistive technology for everyone, everywhere, as well as progressing towards Universal Health Coverage, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and realizing the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

WHO, in partnership with the International Society for Prosthetics and Orthotics (ISPO) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), has recently published global standards for prosthetics and orthotics. Implementation of these standards will support countries to fulfil their obligations under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and towards the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.

The Governments of Ecuador, Pakistan, Germany, Ireland, China, Republic of Korea, United States of America, and Zimbabwe hosted a side event Assistive Technology for All during the 69th World Health Assembly. During the side event, along with other distinguished delegates, H.E. Saira Afzal Tarar and H.E. Margarita Guevara, Health Ministers from Pakistan and Ecuador respectively, launched the WHO Priority Assistive Products List, which is the first step of WHO’s GATE initiative towards improving global access to assistive products for everyone, everywhere.