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Sudan: New limb-fitting capacity

28-04-2000 News Release 00/15

The ICRC signed a new agreement on 20 April covering orthopaedic work in Sudan. The accord, worked out with the ministries of Defence and Social Planning, extends for three years the organization's support to the National Centre for Prosthetics and Orthotics (NACPO) in Khartoum. The signing was followed by an inauguration ceremony to mark the completion of work that had been in progress since 1998 to upgrade the Centre's facilities.

The new agreement results from a decision by the three parties to step up and coordinate their activities to help mine victims and other war amputees. The aim is to enhance the quality of the prostheses and other orthopaedic appliances manufactured by the NACPO and to boost production to 900 units per year. To do this, the ICRC will strive to develop and modernize the local technology by providing standard-quality components made of polypropylene. It will also hold advanced training courses for technicians from Khartoum and other parts of the country.

The renovation of several parts of the NACPO, financed by the ICRC, will go a long way to attaining these objectives. One of the newly renovated buildings houses the production unit for prostheses and orthoses and the training room. The other now has improved facilities for the rehabilitation process and for physiotherapy. Separate premises for men and women have been set up and dormitories are available for those who come from other areas of the country. This is an important step towards ensuring access for amputees and other disabled people who travel to Khartoum from far away, both those who have made the journey at their own initiative – and often have very little money – and those brought there by th e ICRC from the conflict zones.

Cooperation between the ICRC and the Sudanese authorities in the physical rehabilitation of war-wounded and other disabled people began in January 1990. The ICRC also operates a limb-fitting workshop for victims of the Sudanese conflict in Lokichokio, across the border in Kenya.