Health within reach. That’s our journey.
At PATH, our mission is to improve the health of people around the world by advancing technologies, strengthening systems, and encouraging healthy behaviors. In 2010, we moved forward in numerous ways—274 to be exact, the number of projects PATH and our partners advanced in more than 70 countries.
On these pages, we highlight some of our most innovative, inspiring, and interesting milestones of 2010. We hope you enjoy this snapshot of our year.
Harnessing technology for health
As they have been since our founding, appropriately designed, affordable, and innovative health technologies are at the heart of much of our work. In 2010, PATH’s largest technology projects included the Safe Water Project, which sought to bring household water treatment and storage products to poor consumers around the world, and our jet injectors project, which focused on needle-free syringes for administering vaccines. Our Health Innovation Portfolio allowed us to explore and test new ideas, while Technologies for Health (HealthTech IV) focused on adapting, designing, developing, and advancing technology solutions—a goal it has pursued since 1987. These and other technology projects are helping to improve immunization, disease diagnosis, nutrition, child survival, and maternal and reproductive health in developing countries.
Fighting against disease
Our work in vaccines and immunization accelerates research and development, expands access to new vaccines, and strengthens health systems. In 2010, three of our projects—Accelerated Vaccine Introduction, Optimize, and the Rotavirus Vaccine Program—found innovative ways to increase use of vaccines in the developing world. In the world of vaccine development, PATH worked with partners to advance development of safe, effective, and affordable new vaccines against malaria, pandemic influenza, pneumococcal disease, rotavirus, and bacterial causes of diarrheal disease. And the Meningitis Vaccine Project, a collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), introduced its new meningitis A vaccine into three African countries.
Other activities lessen the burden of emerging and epidemic diseases, including HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis (TB), and malaria. Multiple PATH projects helped to reduce the spread of HIV and help those living with HIV/AIDS, particularly in Africa and India, by enhancing HIV prevention for at-risk groups, preventing mother-to-child HIV transmission, strengthening care and treatment, and integrating related services. The Malaria Control and Evaluation Partnership in Africa (MACEPA) worked with global partners to help sub-Saharan African countries rapidly scale up and sustain malaria prevention and control efforts. And we addressed urgent needs for TB control by providing extensive technical assistance and support.
Helping women and children
PATH is also advancing promising solutions that address leading causes of death for women and children. Our projects in maternal and child health focus on safe birth and newborn care, nutrition, and the control of diarrheal disease. In 2010, key projects included the Infant and Young Child Nutrition Project, which worked to improve nutrition from pregnancy through the first two years of life; the Oxytocin Initiative, which helped reduce the risk of excessive bleeding after childbirth through the use of the drug oxytocin; and Sure Start, which worked through many partners to reduce infant and maternal illness and death in India.
In reproductive health, we work to prevent cervical cancer, advocate for services and supplies, address family-planning needs, introduce contraceptive technologies, expand options for abortion-related care, and encourage healthier behaviors. Our 2010 efforts included multicountry research of the most effective strategies for human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination and a project to advance low-cost tests for the types of HPV that cause cervical cancer. We also served as secretariat of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition, a partnership dedicated to ensuring widespread access to reproductive health supplies.
Photo: PATH/Gabe Bienczycki.