Cochrane Rehabilitation and World Health Organization "Rehabilitation 2030: a call for Action"

Last February the World Health Organization (WHO) has gathered together, in Geneva, more than 200 people representing the different rehabilitation stakeholders. The occasion was a meeting aimed to launch “Rehabilitation 2030 – a call for action” and to present the “WHO Recommendations on rehabilitation in health systems”. Our director, Stefano Negrini, and the chair of the communication committee, Francesca Gimigliano, attended the event.

The meeting was meant to draw attention to the increasing needs for rehabilitation in the world; to highlight the role of rehabilitation in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals proposed by the United Nations; to call for coordinated and concerted global action towards strengthening rehabilitation in health systems.

The ageing population and improved access to emergency, trauma and medical care correspond with a growing demand for rehabilitation services. In many parts of the world, however, the capacity to provide rehabilitation is limited or non-existent and fails to adequately address the needs of the population.

The call for action commits participants to work towards improving rehabilitation in countries by creating strong leadership and political support for rehabilitation; strengthening rehabilitation planning and implementation; improving integration of rehabilitation into the health sector to effectively and efficiently meet population needs; incorporating rehabilitation in Universal Health Coverage; building comprehensive rehabilitation service delivery models to progressively achieve equitable access to quality services, including assistive products, for all the population; developing a strong multidisciplinary rehabilitation workforce suitable for country context, and promoting rehabilitation concepts across all health workforce education; expanding financing for rehabilitation through appropriate mechanisms.

“This meeting is likely to have a deep impact in the Health Systems in the next few years” says Stefano Negrini “Cochrane Rehabilitation strategy can be significant in this context, as its main goal is to convey to all rehabilitation professionals the best available evidence as gathered by high quality Cochrane systematic reviews, but also to improve the Cochrane methods for evidence synthesis. This will help rehabilitation professionals to make decisions according to the best and most appropriate evidence. One of the most important challenges of Cochrane Rehabilitation in the next future will be to respond to this call for action”.

All the information regarding the meeting can be found on WHO website ( and a summary of the meeting has been published on the EJPRM,1 together with a commentary from our director.2


1. Gimigliano F, Negrini S. The World Health Organization “Rehabilitation 2030: a call for action”. Eur J Phys Rehabil Med. 2017 Apr;53(2):155-168.
2. Negrini S. The possibilities and challenges of “Rehabilitation 2030: a call for action” by the World Health Organization: a unique opportunity not to be missed. Eur J Phys Rehabil Med. 2017 Apr;53(2):169-172.

Watch the video of Stefano Negrini explaining the possible contribution to Rehabilitation 2030