“When designing medical devices that require a water or electricity supply, for example, it cannot be assumed that these are reliably available in Kenya,” said Aly Syed, System Consultant at Philips Innovation Services, and one of the Philips coaches. “The importance of local design and manufacture is also highlighted by the fact that Kenya does not have the infrastructure or level of training needed to repair imported equipment, which means much of it lies idle.”
A next step would be to focus on commercializing solutions, by developing appropriate business plans and establishing manufacturing and service facilities to enable their widespread deployment.
The Maker project is the result of a collaboration between Philips Foundation and UNICEF, together with Concern Worldwide, Philips Research Africa, the University of Nairobi, Kenyatta National Hospital and Gearbox. This extended collaboration with UNICEF, the world’s leading agency for humanitarian and developmental aid to children worldwide, highlights the Philips Foundation’s commitment not only to SDG3 and SDG9, but also to SDG17: Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.
“Access to healthcare is a key driver of sustainable socio-economic development. Despite tremendous progress, there is still a substantial unfulfilled need for high-quality healthcare that is affordable, equitable and efficiently managed,” said Ronald de Jong, Chairman of the Philips Foundation. “The piloting initiatives that the Philips Foundation drives and supports, are aimed at transforming healthcare systems. Collaborating with complementary partners – such as UNICEF and Concern Worldwide alongside respected institutions in Kenya – we can make and create lasting value.”
The lessons learned in the 4-year Maker Innovation project will help the Foundation and its strategic partners to further explore new ways of using health technology to strengthen and innovate elements of the health delivery system and the wider healthcare ecosystem in underserved communities across the globe.