Making Prosthetics Globally Affordable

May 20, 2014

Van Philips, working out with the prosthetic foot he invented
Credit Daria Price

  It’s more important for an artificial foot to work like the limb it is replacing that to look like it, says the man who invented the carbon fiber Flex-Foot prosthetic. Now he's working to bring the price down to make them affordable worldwide.

Oscar Pistorius at full speed

  In South Africa, observes Van Phillips, carbon graphite prosthetic feet are now unremarkable, thanks to the high profile accomplishments of Olympic runner Oscar Pistorius. He’s hoping other runners from other nations can do the same for their countries through participation in Para-Olympics that take place after the Summer Games every four years.

Phillips is also working on a new invention for amputees, one that would radiacally change the other end of the prosthetic, where the device and the person’s flesh connect.