Action on inclusion
The need for action to make services more accessible to everyone has come under the spotlight at the Global Disability Summit this month. The international conference, hosted virtually by Norway and Ghana, raises awareness of the need for greater inclusion and urges world leaders to commit to positive change.
The additional problems people with disabilities had faced because of Covid-19 restrictions were highlighted by Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo, Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization and Yannis Vardakastanis, President of International Disability Alliance.
Writing in the British Medical Journal last week, they cited the example of a visually impaired primary school teacher in Malawi who lost her job because she was unable to continue her university studies when classes moved online. They said: “In a world preparing for the post-pandemic era, we all need to acknowledge that achieving health and wellbeing for all will only be possible through disability inclusion in health sector priorities. Otherwise, universal health coverage is at risk of remaining a utopia, with one in seven around the world not receiving the health services they need without financial hardship. Recognition of the importance of disability inclusion is only the first step towards achieving health for all.”