The Minister of State at the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Anne Rabbitte, has welcomed a WHO delegation to Ireland for talks on digital and assistive technologies.

Led by Assistant Director General, Dr Mariangela Simao, the delegation will discuss the future development and utilisation of digital and assistive technologies and explore the potential for Ireland to be considered a global leader in this area.

Minister Rabbitte (pictured centre) said: “Ireland has always been at the forefront of the development of assistive technologies, from working with the WHO on the development of the Assistive products list, to the recent development of the Cooperative Real Engagement for Assistive Technology Enhancement (CREATE) initiative.

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“I regularly meet people with disabilities, their families and service providers and know first-hand the huge impact assistive technologies can make, whether it’s wheelchairs, apps, smart speakers or specialised IT equipment.

“This is a very exciting time for innovation and development of digital and assistive technologies. I am determined to ensure that Ireland continues to be at the forefront of the developments in this area and our work with the WHO continues to benefit people with disabilities.”

The meeting comes ahead of the launch of the Global Report on Assistive Technologies where An Taoiseach is a keynote speaker and which will also be addressed by Minister Rabbitte.

The WHO and UNICEF report aims to create a step-change in the global approach to assistive technology.

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