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ICRC physical rehabilitation programmes – Annual Report 2004

31-07-2005 Report

In 1979 the ICRC set up a unit for the physical rehabilitation of war victims. In 2004, the ICRC’s physical rehabilitation programme supported 69 projects in 25 countries. This assistance made possible the delivery of 38,705 orthopaedic appliances, 16,165.5 pairs of crutches and 1,675 wheelchairs. Read more.



In 2004, the ICRC’s Physical Rehabilitation Programme supported 69 projects in 25 countries. This assistance made possible the delivery of 38,705 orthopaedic appliances (17,811 prostheses and 20,894 orthoses), 16,165.5 pairs of crutches and 1,675 wheelchairs. Most patients fitted with prostheses or orthoses also underwent physiotherapy to accustom them to the devices. Of the total number of prostheses produced by ICRC-assisted centres, 56% were for mine victims.

During the year, the ICRC initiated three new national programmes – in India, Nepal and Pakistan – and one new project within the existing national programme in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It handed over two programmes – Namibia and Zambia – to national partners and ceased assistance to seven physical rehabilitation centres – one in the DRC, three in Ethiopia, two in Lebanon and one in the Russian Federation.

The ICRC ran 14 national programmes (42 projects) with the full-time presence of an expatriate specialist. For the remaining 11 national programmes (27 projects) - Algeria, Azerbaijan, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Georgia, Iraq, Namibia, Nepal, Lebanon, Russia and Syria – it provided technical monitoring through regular short visits by ICRC specialists.

The ICRC subsidized the formal training in prosthetics and orthotics of 27 technicians from 8 countries and organized physiotherapy refresher courses in Afghanistan, Angola, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Georgia, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), Myanmar and Zambia. Formal and upgrading training in prosthetics and orthotics continued in Afghanistan, Ethiopia and Sudan and was completed in the Russian Federation.

During the year, headquarters staff or regional specialists carried out 21 assessment/support missions to projects in Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Chad, China, the Democratic Republic of th e Congo, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Lebanon, Namibia, Pakistan, Russia, Sudan, Syria, Yemen and Zambia.

Finally, the ICRC was awarded the Brian Blatchford Prize at the 11th World Congress of the International Society for Prosthetics and Orthotics (ISPO), held in Hong Kong in August 2004. The ICRC received the prize “in recognition of its innovative achievements, particularly in the design and development of the polypropylene prosthetic system, which over the years has become a standard for appropriate and low cost prosthetic services in developing countries”.

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