The Grand Challenge for Development aims to generate pioneering solutions to help healthcare workers provide better care in the midst of the Ebola epidemic. This challenge will unite the global community in the quest for ingenious ideas that deliver practical and cost-effective innovations in a matter of months.
USAID needs new ideas to help ensure that treatment sites, communal transport units, and burial sites do not become infection sources. USAID needs new solutions that strengthen the safety and increase the comfort of the suits, from improving fabric design to measuring a health worker’s temperature and heart rate.
USAID needs new ways to simplify clinical processes, including point-of-care diagnostics. And need new tools that continue to create a safer clinical environment, including improving infection control and waste disposal. Taken together, these innovations will enable health workers to provide better care for those who are suffering.
Everyday, in hot, humid, and extremely difficult environments, health care workers in Ebola-affected countries are performing critical tasks that save lives and prevent the spread of the virus. Personal protective equipment (PPE) offers critical protection, but also is the greatest source of discomfort and stress for the workers. While PPEs protect health care workers, they cannot be worn for more than 40 minutes in hot climates, severely limiting the time health care workers can care for their patients.
Together with our international partners, USAID will translate the expertise and ingenuity of scientists, innovators, engineers, and students from across the globe into real solutions. With your bold thinking and engagement, we can give health workers the tools they need to win this fight.