Disability and rehabilitation

WHO hosts event in the context the Sixth Session of the Ad Hoc Committee on a draft convention addressing the rights and dignity of people with disabilities

The Sixth Session of the Ad Hoc Committee on a "Comprehensive and Integral Convention to Promote and Protect the Rights and Dignity of Persons with Disabilities" was held at United Nations headquarters in New York from 1-12 August 2005. In the margins of these discussions, WHO hosted an event to introduce the 58th World Health Assembly Resolution on "Disability, including prevention, management and rehabilitation" and to raise awareness among participants of the key issues which constitute the right to health, particularly as relates to people with disabilities. Under article 21 of the draft convention, States recognize that people with disabilities have the right to enjoy the highest attainable standard of health without discrimination.

Dr Richard Alderslade, WHO Director of External Relations and Governing Bodies of the WHO Office at the United Nations, chaired the event. Speakers included Dr Federico Montero, WHO Coordinator for Disability and Rehabilitation at WHO headquarters and Dr Armando Vasquez, WHO Regional Adviser on Disability from the Regional Office of the Americas. Approximately 40 people attended the event including representatives from governments, nongovernmental organizations and disabled people's organizations. The next round of discussions on the convention will take place during the meeting of the Ad Hoc Committee scheduled for January 2006.