The three ideas from PATH were among 15 selected out of a pool of more than 550 submissions from public, private, and academic institutions worldwide as the most promising solutions to save lives in developing countries within the critical 48 hours around the time of birth.
The Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development partnership—composed of the United States Agency for International Development, the Government of Norway, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Grand Challenges Canada, the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, and the Korea International Cooperation Agency—announced the grant nominations following the DevelopmentXChange event held July 25 through 27 in Washington, D.C. The validation grants will support teams to introduce and validate the effectiveness of their innovations to reach proof-of-concept.
The diagnostic and device innovations from PATH’s Technology Development and Introduction division range from an on-site chlorine generator for labor ward disinfection to an at-home diagnostic to help detect preeclampsia to a respiratory package of devices to help newborns struggling to breathe.
Preventing infection in labor wards
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 10 to 15 percent of the roughly 303,000 women and 2.7 million newborn deaths in 2015 due to pregnancy- and childbirth-related complications were directly linked to unhygienic conditions during labor and birth. PATH and its partners, MSR Global Health and Safe Water and AIDS Project, seek to validate the usability, acceptability, effectiveness, and cost requirements of the SE-Flow device—an on-site, easy-to-use chlorine generator—in eight district-level labor wards in Kenya. More...
Diagnosing a dangerous pregnancy condition
PATH, the Global Pregnancy Collaboration, and LifeAssay Diagnostics will work together to advance development of a low-cost, one-step rapid diagnostic test for preeclampsia/eclampsia, a condition that WHO estimates causes up to 16 percent of maternal deaths worldwide. The test detects urinary adipsin, a promising human biomarker that has potential to enable earlier and more accurate detection of women at high risk of developing preeclampsia than currently available tests, such as the protein-only urine dipstick. This new test is designed to be simple enough to be used outside of clinics including by health workers at the community level where many pregnant women receive their routine antenatal care. PATH will advance the test prototype and conduct laboratory evaluations to validate its performance across a geographically diverse population of pregnant women. More…
Helping newborns breathe
PATH, the Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Global Health and Human Rights, Sinapi Biomedical, and collaborators are working to expand access to continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy for newborns. The team will conduct feasibility studies of a newborn respiratory package consisting of a low-cost bubble CPAP (bCPAP) device, oxygen blender, nasal prongs, and pulse oximeter, together with training—in India, Kenya, and Uganda, which will provide feedback for device improvements and help reduce infant deaths in those facilities where no prior intervention existed.
Previous PATH technologies supported by Saving Lives at Birth include the Nifty Feeding Cup for preterm infants, needle-free options to deliver lifesaving medicines to women during pregnancy and labor, and maternal and newborn diagnostics, among others.
PATH is the leader in global health innovation. An international nonprofit organization, we save lives and improve health, especially among women and children. We accelerate innovation across five platforms— vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, devices, and system and service innovations—that harness our entrepreneurial insight, scientific and public health expertise, and passion for health equity. By mobilizing partners around the world, we take innovation to scale, working alongside countries primarily in Africa and Asia to tackle their greatest health needs. Together, we deliver measurable results that disrupt the cycle of poor health. Learn more at www.path.org.
About Saving Lives at Birth
The Saving Lives at Birth partnership, launched in 2011, includes the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Grand Challenges Canada (funded by the Government of Canada), the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA). It is a global call for groundbreaking, scalable solutions to end infant and maternal mortality around the time of birth.
Saving Lives at Birth aims to address the 303,000 maternal deaths, 2.7 million neonatal deaths, and 2.6 million stillbirths that occur each year around the world. To date, successful Saving Lives at Birth innovations are already beginning to scale, supporting over 1.5 million women and newborns and saving approximately 10,000 lives.
Posted August 18, 2017.