The African Federation of Orthopedic Technicians (FATO) aims to promote access to the right to functional rehabilitation of disabled people in Africa through the establishment of a network of professionals (orthopedists, physiotherapists, rehabilitation doctors, etc.). .)
At the birth of the Federation there is a report: Orthopedic technicians from several West and Central African countries gathered in a workshop in Lomé, Togo, make an analysis of the current situation of functional rehabilitation of people with disabilities in Africa.
From their reflections it appears among other characteristics:
- The lack of a framework for exchange between orthopedic technicians at national and regional level;
- The lack of continuous training of technicians, Difficulties of access to information by professionals;
- The lack of recognition of the profession by the various public health authorities of most African countries.
- A tool is then put in place to meet their needs: The African Federation of Orthopedic Technicians, abbreviated FATO.
Created in February 1992, the African Federation of Orthopedic Technicians will be officially recognized in November 1999 by decree n °; 99 122 / MAT / SG / DG AT / DLPAJ of the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Security of Burkina Faso, with Ouagadougou as its headquarters. It is a structure that brings together the national associations of African countries whose main objective is to promote the rehabilitation of persons with disabilities. Its purpose is to organize and coordinate their actions to help their members to better practice their profession.
FATO pursues the following objectives:
- Bring together all associations of orthopedic technicians in Africa in a framework of exchange of mutual assistance and fulfillment
- Work for the functional rehabilitation of all people with disabilities in Africa
- Help promote and research new technologies adapted to African realities
- Create a framework for consultation, training and exchange of experience of African countries among themselves and with other countries of the world.
It consists of a Federal Conference and a Regional Assembly.
The Conference is the supreme body of the Federation. It meets every two years in ordinary session.
The Regional Assembly is made up of the members of the region concerned. It meets every two years.
Today the FATO zone of influence covers all of Francophone Africa and Central Africa, but the federation plans to extend its activities to all of Africa. The members of the federation are grouped into five sections corresponding to the regional division of Africa established by the Organization of African Unity (OAU):
- The northern section includes Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia.
- The West section includes Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.
- The Central Section is that of Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo Brazaville, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe and Chad. .
- The eastern section consists of the Comoros Islands, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda and Tanzania.
- The southern section is South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
To date, some thirty (30) national associations members of the FATO have obtained their recognition on the forty (40) registered.
Today, FATO has about 300 individual members, most of whom are orthopedic technicians, technical assistants and orthopedic shoemakers.
In West and Central Africa the number of orthopedic technicians is estimated at about 300 people. They are dispersed in 17 countries whose total population is estimated at 248.2 million inhabitants including 24.82 million people with disabilities.
The basic texts of the federation are available in French and in English.
Several activities are conducted in the field. These are mainly the training of leaders and members of associations, the creation of databases on professional associations and the structures in which they operate, and the organization of workshops.
A website for FATO and a newsletter of national associations and their members are planned.
The main partners of FATO are: