GSK, Save the Children call for Ugandan innovators to enter $1 million award

GSK, Save the Children call for Ugandan innovators to enter $1 million award

GSK and Save the Children have launched their fourth annual $1 million Healthcare Innovation Award, which rewards innovations in healthcare that help to reduce child deaths in developing countries and have the potential to reach even more children.

Ugandan-based Living Goods won part of the prize fund in 2014 for their cost-effective, entrepreneurial community health promoter programme.

This year, until 7 September, Ugandan organisations can once again nominate innovative healthcare approaches they have implemented.

These innovations must have resulted in tangible improvements to under-5 child survival, be sustainable and have the scope to be scaled-up and replicated.

The Award is one of a number of initiatives from GSK and Save the Children’s five-year partnership, which combines the two organisations’ expertise and skills with the aim to help save one million children’s lives.

Since 2013, more than a dozen inventive approaches — from a breast milk pasteurisation device to an affordable diarrhoea treatment kit — have been recognised through the Award.

This year, as well as recognising approaches that have helped reduce child deaths, the Award will give special attention to innovations that focus on the hardest-to-reach children.

Alfred Wise, Living Goods Country Director, said: “Winning the Healthcare Innovation Award advanced our ability to reach more mothers and children in communities across Uganda.

We have a stronger relationship with the Ministry of Health following meeting with them at the Award ceremony and there is an even greater awareness and acceptance of our services in the communities where we work.”

Sam Mbowa, Country Manager for GSK in Rwanda and Uganda, said: “When it comes to reaching the most vulnerable Ugandan children with quality healthcare, no single organisation has all the answers. So we’re always searching for new and different ideas, wherever they might be.

Our Award recognises that some of the best solutions to development challenges come from people living with them.

Tough conditions can stimulate innovation, generating solutions that are relevant and adaptable. If these bright ideas can be shared across countries and continents, the impact could be profound.”

Outlining the focus of this year’s Award, Ali Forder, Director of Programme, Policy and Quality at Save the Children, added: “Extraordinary progress has been made in recent years to reduce the number of children dying before their fifth birthday.

Despite this progress, more than five million children still die each year and millions of children are being left behind because of their gender, poverty, or ethnic identity; because they live in remote areas or urban slums; or because they are caught up in conflicts. We want to seek out and recognise ways in which these children can be reached.”

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