AccessAbilities Expo Witness Technological Boom in its 5th Edition

  • Expo, launchpad for latest assisted tech and rehab products for People of Determination
  • Global companies showcase solutions and products for the first time in the region

The 5th Edition of AccessAbilities Expo has emerged as the most important platform for showcasing the latest assistive technologies and rehabilitation products for People of Determination and makes the UAE one of the friendliest countries for People of Determination.

In line with the vision of the government to make the UAE friendly to PODs and a leading country in the area of caring for and empowering them, while also enhancing its reputation as a global hub for assistive technologies, manufacturers and suppliers of assistive technology and rehabilitation products have come together to display the latest advanced products and technologies for the first time in the region, with the participation of 250 exhibitors, brands and centres for people with disabilities.

AccessAbilities Expo being held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group, has brought together more than 250 companies from across 50 countries. The Expo is organised by Nadd Al Shiba PR & Event Management.

Well-known for offering new products and innovations targeting the People of Determination segment, the national company Naffco attracted many visitors to its stand. Huthaifa Al Humaidi, Sales Director, said this is Naffco’s first participation in AccessAbilities Expo and it certainly will not be the last, as it is a very important event that aims to serve an important segment of society, namely People of Determination, to whom the UAE is keen to provide the finest and best services. He also emphasized the event’s humanitarian message of caring for people of determination.

“The company showcased more than one new product, namely a transport vehicle for people of determination that can accommodate up to five wheelchairs inside it, and is equipped with the latest safety systems and is 100% manufactured in the UAE. It also displayed an innovative glove that simulates sign language when connected to smart devices, as it translates signs into spoken language and contains 93 international languages. The company stand also presented a new system for serving the blind, which is a guide that enabling the blind to navigate in public places and malls by tracking the points installed in these places; in addition to displaying a special room for people with autism that contains special devices, equipment and effects providing a better environment that allows them to respond to treatment in an effective manner,” Al Humaidi added.

Topland, a leading regional supplier of products and services dedicated to helping PODs, is showcasing its latest products of floating beach wheelchairs, water slides and beach mats, which aim to provide PODs with an ideal experience on public beaches.

Topland CEO Andy Faulkner, said: “We are participating for the third year in a row in this international event, which represents a major platform where experts and specialists from all over the world and the region meet to present the latest solutions and products that make the world a better place for people of determination.”

He also pointed out that the company is conducting live demos of video doorbells, telephone alert systems, and vibrating fire alarms that aim to help the deaf or those who have hearing problems. Topland will also unveil “We Walk”, the world’s first smart wand.

Portugal-based ZenSenses has unveiled a support programme that helps implement sensory spaces, whether in community centres, hospitals, airports, schools, clinics, or in homes. As the concept of Snoezelen or multi-sensory stimulation has spread all over the world, the company is creating white or black Snoezelen rooms, sensory gardens, and Snoezelen in aquatic environments and even prisons.  Everyone can enjoy this relaxing environment through the use of a variety of controlled sensory stimuli, such as music, sounds, lights, vibrations and interactive scents, as Snoezelen can be used for therapeutic or educational purposes to develop healthy habits or to promote a sedentary lifestyle.

Ana Lúcia Frutuoso, Founder and CEO of ZenSenses, indicated that rehabilitation and assistive technology are the focus of attention in the region by caregivers and families of PODs, which is what the company is highlighting during its participation in this exhibition.

Manafeth Mobility Solutions showcased a smart staircase to help PODs move inside their homes, with a length of 73 metres,  the longest in the Middle East. It also designed a wheelchair intended for individuals and companies. Enjoying a 5-year warranty, the wheelchair is made of aluminium to provide lightness and flexibility in customizing positions as needed.

Adnan Bashir, Managing Director of Manafeth Mobility Solutions, confirmed that new technologies have brought about a real revolution in products dedicated for PODs and the elderly who face mobility problems.

Bashir clarified that the sector targeted by these leading technological innovations accounts for about 8-10% of the total population of any country, which is the ratio of PODs to total population in addition to a wide segment of the elderly who face mobility difficulties.

Australia-based Polyspine is showcasing its latest technology in terms of its torso and head support system, which features light weight and ease of carrying, making it easy to use as a piece of multi-purpose equipment during multiple situations or scenarios. Once the special modular exoskeleton is configured to fit the shape of the user’s spine by a trained occupational therapist, a unique device is created to support the torso and head. This includes a well-fitting chest belt and waist belt.

Clint Saban, Director and Co-founder of Polyspine, explained that this customized support device can then be easily swapped in and out of existing seating systems or entertainment equipment, with a range of mounting brackets or accessory options, to then create an inclusive environment benefiting the user as needed, since it is designed for use by people with high-level physical disabilities, and to also help people with a range of disabilities, including cerebral palsy, quadriplegia, muscular dystrophy, motor neuron disease and any other disabilities with similar symptoms.