Disability and rehabilitation

Informal consultation held on development of WHO action plan on disability

On 8 October the WHO Secretariat welcomed Member States and UN Agencies in Geneva for an informal consultation on the draft "WHO action plan 2014-2021: better health for persons with disabilities" to gather feedback on key components of the draft plan and to review the consultation process that is underway on its development.

The consultation was attended by delegations from 59 Member States, the European Union, and 9 UN Agencies. The meeting was co-chaired by Dr Oleg Chestnov, WHO Assistant Director-General for Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health, and Ambassador Ana Maria Menendez, Permanent Representative of Spain to the UN.

After opening remarks from the co-chairs and a briefing from the WHO Secretariat on the draft action plan and the consultation process, a lively discussion took place with various general and specific comments from the delegates.

While comments were generally very positive about the quality and comprehensiveness of the draft and the consultation process, a number of suggestions were made concerning issues such as definitions, proposed activities and indicators to measure success.

This informal consultation complements a series of regional and online consultations which are currently underway.

The draft plan will be modified based on input received and presented to the WHO Executive Board in January 2014 in preparation for consideration at the 67th World Health Assembly in May 2014.