ReLAB-HS Announcement | Physiopedia’s Involvement in International Rehabilitation Project

A least 1/3 of the worlds population will need rehabilitation at some point over the course of a period of illness or injury. Put into numbers there are 2.4 billion people in the world that need rehabilition. If we break this down further we can see a geographical disparity in access to services resulting in higher rates of need in low and middle income settings with an inability to access rehab services. There has never been such an urgency to address this issue which is why Physiopedia is proud to annouce our involvement in the ReLAB-HS project.

USAID logo
ReLAB-HS logo

Here is the full press release.

New USAID Award for Strengthening Physical Rehabilitation in Health Systems

Physiopedia are delighted to join the Learning, Acting and Building for Rehabilitation in Health Systems consortium (ReLAB-HS). Along with consortium partners, we will implement this flagship program that will address the growing global need for physical rehabilitation, including appropriate assistive technology, services. ReLAB-HS is funded by an award from the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Leahy War Victims Fund (LWVF).

ReLab-HS aims to strengthen the development of responsive and sustainable physical rehabilitation services across the lifespan in the communities where they are most needed, as well as building health system governance and employing the use of technology and digital assets to improve physical rehabilitation globally.

The need for physical rehabilitation services, including assistive technology, is urgent and growing—more than 2.4 billion people worldwide are estimated to benefit from physical rehabilitation services. The proportion of the population over 60 will double in the next 30 years the majority of whom will live with chronic disease. Approximately 150 million children and adolescents experience disabilities, and injuries for people of all ages are becoming more frequent due to conflict, rapid urbanization and motorization. These enormous unmet rehabilitation needs are concentrated amongst the poorest and most vulnerable populations in low- and middle-income countries and conflict-affected settings.

This five-year, $39.5 million program will transform the way people think about physical rehabilitation as part of health systems. It will work globally and in a number of low- and middle-income countries with varying levels of physical rehabilitation need and infrastructure. ReLAB-HS presents a genuine opportunity to provide real improvements in the quality of life, functionality and independence for people through simple interventions at the primary care level, and the use of technology to bring physical rehabilitation further into community settings.

ReLAB-HS will focus on building local and international leadership, crafting local, demand-driven approaches and innovations, and working largely in community and at home settings, implementing real and relevant rehabilitation and policy solutions.

“This is such an amazing opportunity for rehabilitation globally.  Physiopedia has been committed to the education of therapists all over the world, and participating in this programme will give us the opportunity to radically increase the effectiveness and impact of our work.” said Rachael Lowe, Physiopedia Co-Founder and Trustee.

“Through this programme, in collaboration with the other consortium partners and the generous support provided by USAID, not only will we be able to extend our mission to provide universal, equitable and inclusive access to rehabilitation knowledge, but we will be able to align this with the wider work of all rehabilitation stakeholders to raise awareness of rehabilitation and it’s integration into health systems.”

ReLAB-HS will be led through the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA and co-led by the Nossal Institute for Global Health, Australia. Other global partners include Humanity and Inclusion, Miracle Feet, Physiopedia, and UCP Wheels for Humanity.

Physiopedia looks forward to working in partnership on this programme to support the development of responsive rehabilitation services that can rise to this escalating global challenge.

Go to the ReLAB-HS website