Experiences of providing prosthetic and orthotic services in Sierra Leone − the local staff’s perspective

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper, not in proceedingpeer-review


    Introduction: In Sierra Leone, West Africa, there are many people with disabilities in need of rehabilitation services after a long civil war. Sierra Leone is among the ten least developed countries in the world and half of the population live under the absolute poverty line with an income less than $1.25 a day.

    Aim: The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the experiences of prosthetic and orthotic service delivery in Sierra Leone from the local staff’s perspective.

    Method: Fifteen prosthetic and orthotic technicians working at all the rehabilitation centres providing prosthetic and orthotic services in Sierra Leone were interviewed. The interviews were transcribed and subjected to latent content analysis.

    Results: One main theme emerged: sense of inability to deliver high quality prosthetic and orthotic services. This main theme was generated from eight sub-themes: desire for professional development; appraisals of work satisfaction and norms; patients neglected by family; limited access to the prosthetic and orthotic services available; problems with materials and machines; low public awareness concerning disabilities; marginalisation in society and low priority on the part of government.

    Conclusions: The findings illustrated traditional beliefs about the causes of disability and that the public’s attitude needs to change to include and value people with disabilities. Support from international organisations was considered necessary as well as educating more prosthetic and orthotic staff to a higher level. People with a disability needed to be included to a greater extent and supported at different levels within families, communities, government, international organisations, and society in general.

    Reference: Magnusson L. Ahlström G, Experiences of providing prosthetic and orthotic services in Sierra Leone − the local staff’s perspective. Disability and Rehabilitation 2012; 34:2111-8
    Free on line through Jönköping University parallel publishing: Available from: http://hj.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:551197/FULLTEXT01.pdf

    Magnusson L. Prosthetic and Orthotic Services in Developing Countries. Doctoral Thesis. School of Health Sciences: Dissertation Series No 56. 2014. ISBN 978-91-85835-55-3 Available from: http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-24973
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2016 Aug 21
    EventFATO 8 th International Congress in 2016 - Lomé, Togo
    Duration: 2016 Aug 212016 Aug 26


    ConferenceFATO 8 th International Congress in 2016

    Subject classification (UKÄ)

    • Orthopedics

    Free keywords

    • prosthetic
    • orthotic services
    • Sierra Leone


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