Donated physical therapy equipment in Tanzania

WCPT publishes information note on physical therapy equipment donation

In some countries nearly 80% of health care equipment is donated or funded by international donors. But, according to WHO a large proportion (up to 70% in sub-Saharan Africa) of donated equipment lies idle because of a disconnect between recipients and donors around need.

A stakeholder in Uganda who frequently uses donated equipment said: ‘If it’s well managed it’s a blessing to us, the beneficiaries. But if it’s poorly coordinated it is a disaster. Some people call it using the recipient as a dumping ground especially in the donation of used but not well-refurbished equipment.’

Emma Tebbutt, technical officer at the WHO said: ‘The Ugandan government had to spend a portion of their wheelchair budget disposing of donated wheelchairs which were not fit for purpose.’

To address issues like this, WCPT has developed an information note to provide information for recipients and donors and help find the best possible solution for the donation of physical therapy equipment.

The information note has been developed with input from a range of stakeholders (including ADAPT, ICRC, WHO). At WCPT's General Meeting in Singapore in 2015, delegates voted for WCPT to develop an information paper for donors and recipients on rehabilitation equipment donations among the global physiotherapy community.

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