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Report: 11 innovations could save more than six million mothers and children by 2030

September 15, 2016 by PATH

Analysis demonstrates essential role of innovation in ending preventable deaths

media@path.org
206-302-4637

Washington, DC, September 14, 2016—The PATH-led Innovation Countdown 2030 Initiative (IC2030) today launched a new report, Harnessing the Power of Innovation to Save Mothers and Children, that estimates more than six million mother and child lives could be saved by 2030 if just 11 emerging innovations are advanced and scaled up in 24 countries. The results are further evidence of the power of innovation to help reach global targets to end preventable mother and child deaths.

PATH conducted the analysis in partnership with Johns Hopkins University and with permission from the US Agency for International Development (USAID). Leveraging the university's Lives Saved Tool (LiST), the analysis specifically examines the contribution innovation can make to achieving coverage-level targets set by USAID's Acting on the Call report as part of its effort to scale up lifesaving interventions for women, newborns, and children in its 24 priority countries. Key to achieving the results estimated by this analysis will be making sure innovations are advanced and reach the women and children who need them.

"This analysis highlights that achieving these ambitious goals by 2030 requires aggressively scaling existing cost-effective tools as well as new innovations that make health care more affordable, accessible, and/or effective," said Amie Batson, Chief Strategy Officer and Vice President of Strategy and Learning at PATH. "Decision-makers in countries and in USAID need this kind of data to make informed choices about where to invest limited resources to reach those hardest-to-reach populations and reduce inequities."

Most impactful innovations

The 11 innovations modeled in the analysis were previously identified through PATH's IC2030 project, in which health innovations crowdsourced from around the world were ranked by experts for their lifesaving potential.

Of the innovations modeled in this new report, the largest impact in lives saved are related to:

  • New products to improve access to family planning, namely injectable contraceptives like Sayana® Press.
  • New tools to diagnose and treat pneumonia among children faster, including better respiratory rate monitors and portable pulse oximeters.
  • Kangaroo Mother Care, which consists of using skin-to-skin contact and breastfeeding to improve survival of low-birthweight or premature babies.

Innovations that prevent disease also have substantial impact, such as chlorhexidine, a low-cost antiseptic applied for umbilical cord care, and new approaches for small-scale water treatment, such as chlorinators.

Investments in innovation essential to reaching global goals

In the past two decades, strategic investments and scale up of proven health interventions has drastically reduced maternal and child deaths. Child deaths have been cut by more than half, from 12.7 million in 1990 to 5.9 million in 2015. Maternal deaths have declined from more than 530,000 to approximately 300,000 in that same time period. Successes in reducing maternal and child mortality have emboldened global leaders to chart a course for ending preventable child and maternal deaths altogether. Innovation will be essential to meeting those goals by 2030.

The report makes recommendations to donor country governments, USAID in particular, for advancing the devices, drugs, and systems or services that will have the greatest impact in saving lives. It calls for additional investment by traditional donors and non-traditional actors—such as the private sector and impact investors. It also highlights the importance of supporting innovators in low-and middle-income countries who are often best placed to solve their own countries' health challenges, but may lack the resources to overcome roadblocks along the development cycle.

Download the report at www.path.org/publications/. Learn more about the innovations and download additional materials at www.ic2030.org/resources/.

About Innovation Countdown 2030

Innovation Countdown 2030 (IC2030) is reimagining what's possible in global health. Led by PATH, the initiative is creating a platform to identify, evaluate, and showcase high-impact technologies and interventions that can transform global health by 2030. By engaging entrepreneurs, investors, innovators, and experts across sectors and around the world, IC2030 aims to raise awareness of and support for high-potential innovations to catalyze investment and accelerate health solutions with the greatest promise to save lives. Learn more at www.ic2030.org.

About PATH

PATH is the leader in global health innovation. An international nonprofit organization, PATH saves lives and improves health, especially among women and children. Accelerating innovation across five platforms—vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, devices, and system and service innovations—PATH harnesses its entrepreneurial insight, scientific and public health expertise, and passion for health equity. By mobilizing partners around the world, PATH takes innovation to scale, working alongside countries primarily in Africa and Asia to tackle their greatest health needs. With these key partners, PATH delivers measurable results that disrupt the cycle of poor health. Learn more at www.path.org.

Sayana Press is a registered trademark of Pfizer, Inc.