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Kenyatta says Govt is working to make acquisition of wheelchairs free

President Uhuru Kenyatta says his administration is working to make mobility equipment such as wheelchairs free.

Speaking at a youth conference in Nairobi, Kenyatta said the government is working with various stakeholders among the National Hospital Insurance Fund to make sure such devices are not only affordable but free.

“We need to make these much more readily available,” he said.

Persons with Disability wanting to own cars usable to their conditions also stand to benefit.

According to Kenyatta, as the country progresses, the government should ensure that such cars are imported duty free to encourage more persons with disability to buy them.

“We want Persons with Disability to also be owners of cars like any other Kenyan,” he said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists transportation barriers as some of the key challenges that disabled people may face.

“Lack of access to accessible or convenient transportation for people who are not able to drive because of vision or cognitive impairments and public transport being unavailable or at inconvenient distances or locations,” it says.

Survey

A survey conducted by Markets and Markets indicates that the vehicles for disabled market is projected to reach US$6.3 billion by 2027, from an estimated US$2.6 billion in 2019.

According to the finding, increasing emphasis on providing equality to disabled people in terms of accessibility and mobility solution and improving healthcare infrastructure in developing countries is expected to boost the market.

“The market in North America is projected to experience steady growth owing to technological advancement and growing demand for quality & safe healthcare services by the disabled people, while the Asia Pacific market is the fastest-growing market due to government initiatives and investment in healthcare infrastructure. However, high cost and lack of medical reimbursement act as restraining factors.”

Data

Data from the Global Disability Rights, an international resource center indicates that 1.16 million people in Kenya have mobility-related disabilities and more than half of them live in rural areas. The report also finds that there are also 0.84 million visually impaired persons. 

Margaret Njugunga