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Here’s all you need to know about the WHO Africa Innovation Challenge

Featured image: WHO Africa Region via Twitter
Featured image: WHO Africa Region via Twitter

Are you working on new solution that could help address some of Africa’s unmet health needs? Then you’re just the sort of innovator that the World Health Organisation (WHO) is looking for.

WHO is calling on innovators with scalable healthcare solutions to submit applications for the WHO Africa Innovation Challenge. Entries for the initiative close on 10 December.

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The WHO Africa Innovation Challenge will prioritise solutions across three categories, namely: product innovation, service innovation and social innovation.

Applications for the WHO Africa Innovation Challenge close on 10 December

The challenge is open to African nationals as well as foreign nationals that are either based on the continent or working with an African-based entity.

Successful entries will be African-relevant, innovative and scalable. Applicants must ensure that their solutions apply to one of the following:

Product or technological innovations: Entries in this category contribute to the research and development of new products, or improve existing products. These innovations will generate new technological knowledge for adoption by the market, examples include infrastructure, medicine, supplies as well as mobile health solutions.

These solutions must address existing health problems, be ready to go to market or be at a prototype stage.

Process or service innovations: Entries in this category cover the implementation of a new or improved production or delivery method, like an innovative financing mechanism.

The solution must address existing health service delivery problems and be ready for implementation.

Social innovations: This category is for new strategies and organisations that meet social needs — from working conditions, education, to community development and health — that extend and strengthen civil society.

These solutions will address an existing social challenge affecting health service delivery. In addition, submissions must be at a pilot stage and must support and enable people to change their lives.

Overall, preference will be given to solutions that have gone beyond the proof of concept stage and are at the pilot stage of development or in the process of being scaled up.

Solutions that demonstrate ability or potential to address key health concerns in an accessible, affordable and sustainable way will also be given preference, as will those that demonstrate evidence of ease of use, replicability and durability

Finalists to attend Africa Health Forum

As part of the challenge, WHO will sponsor selected finalists with flights, accommodation and exhibition costs for the Africa Health Forum which will take place on 23 and 24 March in Cape Verde.

At the forum, the challenge finalists will get the opportunity to exhibit their solutions and meet with leaders in the health space.

In addition, the finalists will also stand a chance to exhibit their solutions at the 69th Session of the Regional Committee — a gathering of African health ministers — that takes place next year August in Brazzaville, the Republic of Congo.

Featured image: WHO Africa Region via Twitter

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