People living with disabilities in Cox’s Bazar: Understanding perceptions on aid equity and access

Publication language
Date published
01 Jan 2022
Research, reports and studies
Development & humanitarian aid, Disability

In November 2021, Ground Truth Solutions (GTS) and IOM Needs and Population Monitoring (NPM) embarked on a series of qualitative interviews with persons with disabilities across Rohingya refugee and host community populations with the aim of better informing and supporting agencies in developing disability-inclusive programmes and engagement activities.

Preliminary findings from this research include:

  1. Long wait times, overcrowded health facilities, and far distances to the clinics make access to healthcare difficult and oftentimes outright painful for people with disabilities. 
  2. Respondents express frustration that the treatments and medications they receive do not treat their illnesses, and therefore, they are less likely to seek healthcare when needed.
  3. Prohibitive costs of treatment are a barrier for persons with disabilities seeking medical treatment, resulting in many borrowing money from their community to access healthcare. Some respondents mention selling their rations to pay for their treatment.
  4. Healthcare provision has largely been unaffected by the coronavirus pandemic. In some cases, access has even improved since the start of the pandemic – likely due to movement restrictions causing fewer people to go to clinics..
  5. Participants report that they want to share their experiences, discuss their problems and have their voices listened to more.