“There is no greater disability in society than the inability to see a person as more.” – Robert M. Hensel
80% of people in need of prosthetic limbs live in developing regions – but only about 5-10% have access to them?
If people with amputations in developing or vulnerable contexts have access prosthetic limbs, they
are able to earn a living, contribute to society and lead active lives. Humanitarian organizations like the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) work to address the problem of access with inexpensive prosthetics and training to use them. But available options present problems. They are either:
The ICRC asked EPFL to help create an affordable, yet dynamic and robust prosthetic foot. Working with EPFL labs, we used our methodology to design an alternative adapted to humanitarian contexts.
The solution considers the context of use and a solution that would be universally accessible. This includes the person’s needs for mobility as well as their physical environment and how it impacts the lifecycle of the limb. The Agilis prosthetic foot is:
Today the patented Agilis foot is being deployed in the field by the ICRC, enabling people with amputations to live active, dynamic lives.
The Agilis project was conducted by EssentialTech in collaboration with three EPFL labs and the ICRC. Funding support was provided by the Swiss Commission for Technology and Innovation.
Laboratory for Processing of Advanced Composites
Laboratory of Movement Analysis and Measurement
Laboratory of Applied Mechanics and Reliability Analysis
Image credits: Adobe, ICRC, Mathieu Janier, EPFL, EssentialTech