Advancing Medical Rehabilitation around the World

The International Rehabilitation Fund (IRF) brings together people and institutions that have the passion, expertise and interests in solving issues abroad relating to rehabilitation medicine. We work with universities, governments, and NGOs to accomplish our goals for medical rehabilitation around the world.



On the Ground

Building the Organization

The IRF works in conjunction with:

Some current projects include:

The Ghana Medical Rehabilitation Project: Globally, an estimated 1 billion persons live with disability, with approximately 80% residing in lower resource countries. Rehabilitation Medicine is fundamental for restoring function and improving the quality of persons with disability, yet Rehabilitation Medicine remain under-developed in low to middle income countries, where the need is greatest. The continent of Africa bears 24% of the world’s burden of disease but has only 3% of health providers, on a budget of less than 1% of the worlds health expenditure. This enormous disease burden and it associated disability are amenable to Rehabilitation. Sub-Saharan Africa, with its 1.1 billion people is only served by only 6 Physical Medicine doctors, all located in South Africa.

Ghana, like most Sub-Saharan Africa is devoid of this fundamental health service but has about 15% of its population with disability. Rehabilitation medicine has been shown, in addition to community based integration programs, results in improved survival, better quality of life, and economic benefits to the community at large. To contribute solutions to these disparities impacting children and women in Ghana, we seek to build Medical Rehabilitation at Ghana’s second largest hospital, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi, through collaboration with Ghanaians.

To donate to this project please click on this button:


Documenting the Need for Rehabilitation: IRF’s communication director Tom Haig is producing documentaries about the need for rehabilitation medicine in many low resource countries. This project requires funds for his travel, equipment, and production. Any donation advances this work. In addition we encourage the diaspora persons who have travelled to specific countries to organize and raise sufficient funds to send Tom to their country.

The Africa Strategy meeting: With only about 10 rehabilitation physicians in subsaharan Africa, there are many more African rehabilitation doctors working overseas than on the continent. The IRF is planning a meeting of the expert diaspora in the United States so that they can unify and intelligently create change for their families back home. The conference requires major funding including travel funds for African experts to attend.

To encourage involvement of the poorest rehabilitation professional from around the world the IRF charges no membership fees. Thus, its programs are completely dependent on donations from the leadership and others who understand the critical need.


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