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10/14/2017  |   8:40 AM - 9:45 AM   |  West Ballroom at Shalala Student Services Building

How can the CGHH support universal health coverage through promoting WHO’s Priority Assistive Products List?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has produced a Priority Assistive Products List (APL) composed of fifty items. Seven of those, including hearing and communication aids, are products designed to improve the quality of life of persons who are deaf or hard of hearing. The priority APL aspires to follow in the footsteps of the WHO Model List of Essential Medicines, which creates awareness among the public, mobilizes resources and stimulates competition. The APL is similarly intended to be a catalyst in promoting access to assistive technology. It is not a restrictive list but aims to provide each Member State with a model from which to develop a National APL. WHO estimates that today, more than 1 billion people need one or more assistive products. With a global ageing population and rise in non-communicable diseases, this number will rise beyond 2 billion by 2050, with many older people needing two or more products as they age. However, only 1 in 10 people in need currently have access. This results in many missed opportunities for people to participate in society – for younger people to access education and work, and for older people to continue to live healthy, independent lives in their own homes. Access to assistive technology offers a public health solution to meet the needs of 21st century populations. How can the CGHH members and supporting INGOs contribute to the efforts of national governments, particularly in low- and middle- income countries (LMIC)? In order to move towards ensuring that all persons with hearing problems in need of assistive devices will have access to quality affordable products, a joint effort is required. This presentation aims to provide examples of how we can practically address this important topic, based on the experience of CBM with Ministries of Health and non-governmental organisations working in LMICs.

  • Knowledge sharing about WHO’s Priority Assistive Products List
  • Proposed best practice for INGOs based on the Priority Assistive Devices List
  • Guidelines to CGHH and members to implement best practices

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Diego Santana-Hernandez (POC,Primary Presenter,Author), CBM International,;
Born in Tenerife, Spain. Medical Degree by Universidad de La Laguna (ULL), Spain. ENT Specialist Certificate (ENT-CST) by Specialist Training Authority of the Medical Royal Colleges, London, United Kingdom. General Practitioner NHS Certificate T(GP), United Kingdom General Medical Council. Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (DTM&H) by Liverpool University, UK. Public Health field work for Ear and Hearing Care (EHC) in Bolivia from 2000 to 2011. CBM advisor in EHC for Latin America since 2007 and Global Advisor for EHC since 2009. WHO technical advisor in EHC for several working groups since 2011. Editorial Committee Chair of the Community Ear & Hearing Health journal since 2015. Member of the WHO-led World Hearing Forum Foundational Committee since 2018.


Financial - Receives Salary for Employment,Management position,Teaching and speaking,Consulting,Membership on advisory committee or review panels from CBM International.  

Nonfinancial - No relevant nonfinancial relationship exists.


Financial - Receives support from CBM International.