Access to healthcare is central to human rights, development progress and to every citizen’s wellbeing, including persons with disabilities. Article 25 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) reinforces the right to health of persons with disabilities stating that “persons with disabilities have the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health without discrimination on the basis of disability”. 

The commitment to “leave no one behind”, enshrined in the Agenda 2030, requires all actors involved in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to address the exclusion and the inequalities affecting vulnerable persons, including persons with disabilities. SDG3 sets out to “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”. Central to this is achieving universal health coverage (UHC, SDG 3.8), stating that everyone should have access to the health services they need without facing financial hardship. This implicitly includes persons with disabilities.

Limited availability, accessibility, affordability, and acceptability of services can result in reduced quality of and access to the full range of health services, from promotion and prevention, to treatment, rehabilitation and palliative care. Persons with disabilities face systematic challenges and barriers in realising their right to health.

IDDC Inclusive Health Task Group aims at promoting disability-inclusive health by influencing policies, strategies and financing through evidence-based advocacy, sharing information and knowledge.

Key Data

Persons with disabilities are: 

  • 2 times more likely to find health care providers’ skills and facilities inadequate
  • 3 times more likely to be denied health care
  • 4 times more likely to be treated badly in health care facilities
  • twice as likely to incur catastrophic expenditure due to seeking care; an estimated 50% cannot afford it.
  • In many developing countries, more than 50% of persons with disabilities have an unmet need for rehabilitation services.

Key achievements

  • Participation and submission of a statement at the UHC Multi-stakeholders Hearing (April 2019) 
  • Panellist at the Commonwealth Civil Society Policy Forum (May 2019)
  • Panellist at side event on inclusive health in Community Based Inclusive Development at COSP12
  • IDDC Statement to the Universal Health Coverage High Level Meeting

Upcoming Priorities

  • Continue influencing and coordinating with WHO’s on inclusive health 
  • Universal Health Coverage Day
  • Seek opportunities to collaborate on inclusive health issues with other health organisations and networks –  Rehabilitation Alliance, Global Partnership for Assistive Technology, The Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) NGO Network (NNN); Coregroup inclusive health TAG