GSK and Save the Children have launched their second annual $1 million Healthcare Innovation Award at the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health meeting in South Africa. The award was established to identify and reward innovations in healthcare that have proven successful in reducing child deaths in developing countries.
From the 27 June – 25 August, organizations from across the developing world can nominate examples of innovative healthcare approaches they have discovered or implemented. These approaches must have resulted in tangible improvements to under-5 child survival rates, be 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. Last year the top prize was awarded to Friends of Sick Children (FOSC), Malawi, for their ‘bubble’ Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) kit, which demonstrates the impact of simple, low-cost innovations.
The ‘bubble’ helps babies that are in respiratory distress, often caused by acute infections like pneumonia, by keeping their lungs inflated so they can breathe more easily. A similar version is already commonly used in developed countries where they cost at least $6,000 each. This innovative low-cost ‘bubble’ CPAP adaptation can be produced for approximately $400.
FOSC was granted an award of $400,000, which along with backing from the Ministry of Health in Malawi, will enable them and their partners to share this life-saving technology with teaching hospitals in Tanzania, Zambia and South Africa.
The award also aims to provide a platform for winning organizations to showcase their innovations and share information with others interested in improving healthcare for children in some of the world’s poorest countries.
Sir Andrew Witty, CEO, GSK said: “We are committed to working in partnership with other organisations and our work with Save the Children is a great example of how we can use our scientific expertise and reach to help improve health outcomes for people around the world. As a direct result of this award last year’s winners have already had a tremendous impact and we want to continue to support them as they develop innovations that can be scaled-up and replicated to help reduce child deaths in the world’s poorest countries.”
Justin Forsyth, Chief Executive, Save the Children said: “We know that in order to bring life-saving healthcare to the hardest to reach children, ambitious new ideas and approaches are needed. Last year’s Healthcare Innovation Award found new innovations that are saving children’s lives and can be replicated to help reach even more children. This year, we look forward to discovering more pioneering solutions that will make a bigger impact for the world’s most vulnerable children.”
The GSK and Save the Children Healthcare Innovation Award aims to discover and encourage replication of the best and most innovative examples of healthcare to have the biggest impact for vulnerable children.
The Healthcare Innovation Award was announced following the launch of GSK and Save the Children’s ambitious new partnership in May 2013, which aims to save the lives of 1 million children in some of the world’s most vulnerable communities. One of the most unique aspects of the partnership is the focus on working together to maximize innovations to tackle under-5 child mortality.
Further details on the judging process and criteria can be found here. Entries close on 25th August at 11:59pm (GMT). Winners will be announced in December 2014.