The Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria (PHN), a private sector-led coalition driven by innovative approaches to accelerate progress in achieving health-related MDGs, has launched a programme to save one million lives in Nigeria.
The programme is tagged the Health Innovation Challenge to Save One Million lives.
Herbert Wigwe, the Chair, PHN Nigeria Health Innovation Marketplace (MHIM) Steering Committee and GMD, Access Bank made the announcement at the unveiling the $1million health challenge in Nigeria.
Mr. Wigwe said, “We have developed problem statements in partnership with states and government agencies and we are confident that addressing these constraints through innovation and partnerships, will contribute significantly to the saving one million lives movement.”
He also said PHN “has convened a community of practice for health care innovators in the country. This community will leapfrog innovation through shared learning. After today, there will be learning clusters, spin-offs from this mother group, but we will convene again intermittently, to share not only updates, but our success in savings lives.”
He also said PHM has also led the largest mobile health intervention in the country reaching over 10 million women and children. “We have mobilized private sector resources and capabilities to provide nutrition and life saving commodities to over 500,000 children; we have, in partnership with other stakeholders, executed the first ever healthcare hackhaton to leaverage technology to save lives” he said.
According to him, the NHIM virtual portal has gone live, saying. This is home to the six critical components of the marketplace which by their intrinsic design will spur innovation, whether it is through knowledge sharing, creating visibility for innovators, developing capabilities of innovators, linking innovators with investors, fostering collaboration or generating healthy competition,” he said.
Also speaking at the occasion, Muntaqa Umar-Sadiq, the CEO, PHN, said while Malawi, Uganda and Sierra Leone have developed locally appropriate health technologies and innovations such as Apps, mHealth, etc. to improve health outcomes, health innovations that exist in Nigeria tend to not attain scale/create sustainable impact due to poor support system for health innovators; they lack access to capital, business and financial management and basic business startup support/incubations needed to take ideas through to market, he said.
“Investors have little visibility on compelling viable health innovations. Investors and health innovators lack convergence platforms that create market and technical linkages. In order to leapfrog existing constraints and spur health innovation through a sustainable convergence platform, PHN created a Nigeria Health Innovation Marketplace (MHIM) which is a convergence platform to spur innovation in health for service delivery, and provide market linkages,” he said.