News from Aures Foundation, Georgia: working for upgrades of processors
Cochlear implantation has been carried out in Georgia since 1998, and since 2006 it has been funded under the state program. By 2020, the program was running smoothly, with dozens of children and families receiving life-changing technology. Since then, due to changes around the program, its implementation has been delayed by almost two years.
Ekaterine of the Tortladze Foundation (AF) was involved in identifying and resolving the problem at an early stage. She tells us:
For two years AF has been conducting an active advocacy campaign. AF partnered with government agencies to expedite the problem-solving process. AF used traditional and social media to voice the issue and advocate for it. AF was able to quickly mobilize parents whose children were waiting for funding. AF empowered them to protect their rights by constantly providing up-to-date information and supporting them. AF also involved its friends from various international organizations in this process. It shared videos and emails sent by them on social media. Finally, at the end of 2021, the implementation of the program was resumed and we believe that contribution of AF to this is also important.
Aures Foundation has also actively advocated for the upgrade of the cochlear implant processor, which is not state-funded at this stage. AF managed to get this component on the preliminary list of assistive technologies. Unfortunately, it was removed from the list at the approval stage. But AF continues to work together to ensure the program runs smoothly so that more children can access magical technology that can change their lives.
You can see and hear Ekatrine talking about these issues on our CIICA LIVE event about funding challenges: https://ciicanet.org/events/ciica-live-in-september-ci-funding-challenges-and-priorities/
11 March 2022