$1 million Healthcare Innovation Award for life-saving ideas

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GSK (http://www.gsk.com) and Save the Children continue to call for applications for their 2014 $1 million Healthcare Innovation Award, as previous winners attract interest and support from national governments to help improve survival rates of newborns and children under five in developing countries.

Six months after receiving a share of the 2013 Healthcare Innovation Award, five organisations based in developing countries are helping shape national health agendas and influencing approaches to healthcare for children and newborns.

 

One of the winners, MicroClinic Technologies Ltd., was awarded $100,000 for ‘ZiDi™, a mobile health management system, which has now been adopted by the Kenya Ministry of Health. The system is being used as part of the national e-health platform due to its ability to improve medicine supply, service quality and resource accountability for child healthcare. It will be rolled out across 5,000 public health facilities starting next year.

 

Muso, a community-led organisation in Mali that helps tackle the issue of poverty-related child mortality, also received $100,000 to support its programme which aims to quickly identify women and children in need of healthcare. The award money is being used to help reach 77,000 people across the region and has inspired the Mali Ministry of Health to invite Muso to help draft its five-year strategic plan for scaling up national community-based healthcare delivery.

           

Previous innovations recognised by the Healthcare Innovation Award are also being implemented across borders through collaboration, ensuring that ideas that may help save children’s lives are being shared. The top-prize winner from 2013 was a low cost Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) kit, developed by Friends of Sick Children (FOSC) in Malawi. This device helps premature and newborn babies suffering from distress breathe more easily. With funding from the Award, and backing from the Ministry of Health in Malawi, FOSC is now sharing this technology with teaching hospitals in Tanzania, Zambia and South Africa. This technology has the potential to save the lives of 178,000 African children each year if implemented continent-wide.

 

Organisations from across the developing world can now apply for this year’s Healthcare Innovation Award. Applications must be for innovative healthcare approaches that have resulted in tangible improvements to under-5 child survival rates, which are sustainable and have the potential to be scaled-up and replicated. This year, special interest and attention will be given to work that aims to increase the quality of, or access to, healthcare for newborns.

 

Ramil Burden, Vice President, Africa and Developing Countries, GSK, said: “The success stories we’re hearing from last year’s winners, just six months since receiving their funding, are truly inspiring and we want to help replicate this success. When it comes to improving access to quality healthcare, no single organisation has all the answers and we need to continuously look for new and different ideas, wherever they might be. Our award recognises that often the best solutions to development challenges come from people living with them and through partnerships we can help scale up local solutions to create global impacts.

 

Dr Sam Agbo, Head of Health, Save the Children said: “This year we’re particularly searching for innovations that are helping to improve the health of newborns in the developing world. Every year, almost three million babies die during their first month of life. But many of these deaths are preventable with the right resources and care in place. We must find different approaches, informed by first-hand experience, to address this issue. This Award provides a platform for working in collaboration, which will ultimately help to save the lives of some of the world’s most vulnerable children.”

 

More information on the award and application criteria can be found at http://myg.sk/HealthcareInnovationAward. Entries close on 25th August at 11:59pm (GMT). Winners will be announced in December 2014.

 

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

 

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