Gift of Hands intends to serve as the confederative umbrella organization to various similar efforts by volunteers, non-profits and communities to provide a wide range of choices within the low cost 3D printed prosthetics arena.
Disability is an important public health problem in India with 2.6 million people (26,810,557) living with disability according to the 2011 census. A majority of the disabled reside in rural areas where accessibility, availability, and utilization of rehabilitation services and its cost-effectiveness are major challenges. With some exceptions, the situation for people with disability in urban areas resembles rural areas. Research on disability burden, appropriate intervention strategies and their implementation to the present context in India is necessary to improve the quality and access to healthcare for disabled persons.
3D-printable prosthetics are changing the face of medicine. We make customizable mechanical hands for children who are missing fingers and below elbow amputees using 3-D printers, and give them away for free to children and adults in Africa (Rwanda, Eritrea, Ghana, Congo), Syria, Middle East, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Cambodia, Vietnam.It costs a donor as low as $150 to donate a hand to a child and change their lives.
A prosthetic arm these days can costs upto $40,000. One in 2,000 kids are born with some kind of an arm or hand abnormality. They don’t get prosthetics because it makes no sense to spend $40,000 on something they’re going to outgrow in a year. With a 3-D printer, we can start making these things almost for nothing.
Instead of $40,000, we can do it with about $10 or $20 worth of plastic. And it’s not as sturdy as a $40,000 titanium artificial arm. On the other hand, if you outgrow it or break it, you can make another.
One of the interesting things about this project is that the kids for who we’re making these hands for will be actively involved in the process and become inventors and designers in their own right.
It will also give opportunities for student entrepreneurs to innovate further and create a global movement and a community of makers, tinkerers, artists, designers, humanitarians, teachers, parents, children, engineers, occupational therapists, medical professionals, philanthropists, inventors and everyday people who can using the 3D printers and design skills to create free 3D printed prosthetics and prototypes for those who need them.