Health - Personalised Healthcare

How does digital technology improve the daily lives of people with disabilities?

Changed on 01/02/2023
Health is a major social concern in France. However, despite a healthcare system considered to be one of the best in the world, many people with disabilities still have difficulty accessing appropriate care. Inria has been working on this issue for many years. Here is an overview of the initiatives undertaken by the Institute.
dossier handicap
© Unsplash / Photo Tim Mossholder


It is estimated that over one billion people, or 15% of the world's population, have a disability. A fifth of them, between 110 and 190 million people, have a severe disability.

However, the care offered today is not fully adapted to the demand. This is partly due to high costs and inadequate infrastructure. The World Health Organization estimates that by 2030, more than two billion people will need at least one assistive product. Today, only one in ten people in need has access to assistive technology. 

This is a concern that Inria has taken on board through the research carried out by several project-teams, as well as through a recruitment policy adapted to people with disabilities. Today, 25 of the institute's project teams, generally working in conjunction with its partners (universities, engineering schools, CNRS, other research organizations), are working in some way on the subject of disability. Several partnerships with associations, companies, and technology startups have also been set up in recent years to accelerate the Institute's work in this area.

Finally, Inria has a duty to be an exemplary employer in terms of disability. This is one of the issues addressed in the 2019-2023 COP (Contract of Objectives and Performance), in which the Institute announced the launch of a "Disability Plan" to develop the impact of its research in this area and to become a welcoming employer for people with disabilities.

Focus on four projects carried out by our research teams


REFINED: improving hearing aids using AI


Improve movement assistance for people suffering from tetraplegia

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