News & Updates

Four innovations to tackle under-five deaths win $1 million award

Four health organisations from developing countries have been recognized by GSK and Save the Children for innovations that reduce deaths in children underfive.With more than five million children dying each year before their fifth birthdays, and many more lacking access to basic healthcare, the fourth annual Healthcare Innovation Award has a special focus on innovations providing healthcare for the hardest-to-reach mothers and children.

Selected from 171 submissions from 30 countries by a judging panel comprising health experts from across the globe, the winners are:
* Association for Humanitarian Development (AHD) in Pakistan for their inexpensive and versatile water filter unit, which won the largest share of the Award
* Sinergias in Colombia, the Hardest-to-Reach award winner for a cross-cultural healthcare delivery model for indigenous populations in the Amazon region
* ARMMAN in India for their free mobile voice call service providing preventative care information to mothers
* Alma Sana in Nigeria for their simple, low-cost bracelet to stimulate parents’ uptake and demand for children’s immunisations in Nigeria.
The award is a major initiative of GSK and Save the Children’s five-year partnership, combining the resources, voice and expertise of the two organizations to help save one million children’s lives. The purpose of the award is to identify innovations that are making a tangible difference to children’s health, and enable organisations to share and replicate their approach.Since 2013, 17 inventive approaches have been recognized.

Lauren Braun, Founder and President of Alma Sana, said “After proven success in Peru and Ecuador, we are thrilled to win a share of the 2017 Healthcare Innovation Award to commence a roll-out of our simple low-cost bracelets in Nigeria. We chose to expand to Nigeria because of its poor vaccination rates and large population which make it an ideal place to scale up if successful. The bracelets empower parents by helping them understand and remember their child’s vaccination schedule. By serving as a visual reminder, the bracelets encourage parents to return on time for their child’s vaccination appointments, helping to save more children’s lives”.

Andy Wright, VP Global Health Programmes, GSK said:“Millions of children are being left behind because they live in remote areas. This year’s Healthcare Innovation Award recognises interventions that are supporting mothers and children in some of the world’s most marginalised communities. The award will enable the 2017 winners to expand their operations in these neglected areas and help save more children’s lives.”

Ali Forder, Director of Programme Quality & Impact, Save the Children UK added: “The Healthcare Innovation Award was specifically designed with the understanding that those closest to a complex problem are best placed to design solutions to solve them. These innovations are already delivering clean drinking water, pre and post-natal care and vaccination reminders for the world’s most vulnerable children. In Colombia,Sinergias is supporting families who may only beaccessible by plane or boat, making them the winner of our Hardest-to-Reach award.

A primary focus of the Healthcare Innovation Award is enabling innovative organisations to take their programme to scale and ensure it is sustainable for the long-term. Therefore a portion of the Award fund is set aside for providing tailored, on-the-ground consultative support to the winning organizations :AHD received a consulting Award of $80,000; Sinergias received a consulting Award of $50,000; and ARMANN received a consulting Award of $60,000.