Project Type: Research

Themes: Assistive & Accessible Technology, Inclusive Design

Fit-for-purpose, affordable body-powered prostheses

Location: Uganda, Jordan and UK

Upper limb body powered prosthesis consisting of a hand and an arm that has two sections joined by a mechanical elbow. The arm section is made of a dark brow plastic material while the hand is covered by a sleeve that has a much lighter color, this contrast of colors is one of the reasons prosthetics users reject their prostheses.

Start date: 01 February 2018 End date: 31 January 2022

Prostheses can be used to replace the missing limb, offering both cosmetic and functional benefits. In lower and middle income countries (LMICs), conflict and road traffic accidents mean that demand for upper limb prostheses is high, however provision is sparse, and maintenance is a major challenge. prostheses offer a potentially viable solution. This project brings together an experienced team from across the UK, Uganda and Jordan to understand the needs of prosthetics users in their context and to create a new BP prosthesis that is optimized for adoption by LMIC prosthetic services and acceptable to LMIC users. The project has five working packages (WP) or sub-themes of research. UCL and GDI Hub are leading WP 5: digital tools for evaluation and training.

Outputs

We have visited Uganda and Jordan to perform scoping studies utilizing public and patient involvement and visited relevant stakeholders (hospitals, clinics, prosthetists, research centres, local NGOs, industry representatives). The results of our scoping studies have been published in the Trent International Prosthetics Symposium (TIPS) 2019 and at the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine magazine SCOPE in December 2018.

The scoping studies have shed light on multidimensional challenges and needs of prosthetics users. There is no data regarding real life use of prosthetics, prosthetics users do not have a network or a community thus they are not able to help each other and the possibility of improving public policy is minimal because they are not organized to campaign for better prosthetics services and prostheses access.

We have written the results for Uganda in a paper that is currently under review at the Journal of African Disability.

We are currently writing another paper for Uganda and another for Jordan.

The website for the funding of this project is here: https://gow.epsrc.ukri.org/NGB...

The external website to this project is here: https://www.fit4purposeprosthe...