Many of the technologies used each day in developed country hospitals for diagnosis and treatment, are too costly for health care facilities in resource-poor communities in the developing world. But even if they can be afforded, they may not function well in environments where the power and water supplies are unreliable, ambient temperature cannot be regulated, or because they are dependent upon consumable supplies that are too difficult or too expensive to obtain.
There is a need to develop medical technology that is appropriate to such settings. To be appropriate, the technologies should meet with a variety of criteria: do the job for which they are intended; are affordable; require little training to operate; are reliable; are simple to maintain and repair with parts readily available locally.
There is an overwhelming need, in developing countries, for Biomedical Equipment Technician (BMET) tools; so local BMETs (if available) can support life saving equipment. EWH works both to train local BMETs and encourage creation of technology appropriate in the developing world.