Advertisement

Frugal Medical Technologies and Adaptive Solutions: Field-Based Applications

  • Krish W. Ramadurai
  • Sujata K. Bhatia
Chapter
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Bioengineering book series (BRIEFSBIOENG)

Abstract

In our previous chapter, we explore the various innovation processes that comprise frugal innovation as well as novel innovation paradigms including open and reverse innovation. Importantly, we not only define the theoretical dimensions of these innovation processes but also the functional outputs in the form of tangible technologies/devices. But while the intellectual components of these processes are critical, what does this mean for the future of humanitarian medicine and innovation? The fact of the matter is that the deployment of innovation processes in conflict and crisis situations will likely consist of an amalgam of these processes that is utilized as a catalyst for high-functioning problem-solving in the field. The reality is that crisis and conflict situations are not black and white; thus the solutions developed in the field are likely to reflect this. This is where we examine the field-based applications of these technologies and their specific capacities to preserve human life. But before we delve into these medical devices, who are these devices meant for? There are three critical stakeholders in any humanitarian healthcare operation: humanitarian practitioners (i.e., doctors, nurses, aides, relief workers), community health workers (i.e., frontline public health workers from indigenous communities), and crisis-stricken communities themselves. While the scope and capacity to utilize devices varies among these groups, nonetheless, it is vital that each one of these stakeholders be properly retrofitted with the most basic of equipment, technology, and devices. In this book we take this a step further and examine how we can not only enhance the retrofitting of humanitarian operators but also their respective problem-solving and innovation processes to create “adaptive solutions.” We define these as high-utility, unconventional solutions that are derived in resource-poor settings. The reality is that while we can provide frugal devices to individuals, how do we stimulate continued innovation and the implementation of adaptive solutions on the ground? The innovation process is just as important as the device itself—a paradigm that is often overlooked.

References

  1. Behind the Fences of Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp. 2016. Alarabiya.net. Accessed 20 July 2018. https://english.alarabiya.net/en/blog/2016/03/28/Behind-the-fences-of-Jordan-s-Zaatari-refugee-camp.html
  2. Bhatia, S. K., & Ramadurai, K. W. (2017). 3-Dimensional device fabrication: A bio-based materials approach. In 3D printing and bio-based materials in global health (pp. 39–61). Cham: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Black, R., Laxminarayan, R., Temmerman, M., & Walker, N. (Eds.). (2016). Disease control priorities, (Volume 2): Reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health. Washington, D.C: The World Bank.Google Scholar
  4. Cotton, M., Henry, J. A., & Hasek, L. (2014). Value innovation: An important aspect of global surgical care. Globalization and Health, 10(1), 1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Darzi, A. (2017). The cheap innovations the NHS could take from Sub-Saharan Africa. The Guardian. Accessed 25 July 2018. https://www.theguardian.com/healthcare-network/2017/oct/27/cheap-innovations-nhs-take-sub-saharan-africa
  6. Demand generation I-Kit for underutilized, life saving commodities. 2018. sbccimplementationkits.org. Accessed 12 Aug 2018. https://sbccimplementationkits.org/demandrmnch/about-chx/
  7. Gathwala, G., Sharma, D., & Bhakhri, B. k. (2013). Effect of topical application of chlorhexidine for umbilical cord care in comparison with conventional dry cord care on the risk of neonatal sepsis: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Tropical Pediatrics, 59(3), 209–213.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Gilmore, B., Adams, B. J., Bartoloni, A., Alhaydar, B., McAuliffe, E., Raven, J., Taegtmeyer, M., & Vallières, F. (2016). Improving the performance of community health workers in humanitarian emergencies: A realist evaluation protocol for the PIECES programme. BMJ Open, 6(8), e011753.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Hansen, C. E., & Lam, W. A. (2017). Clinical implications of single-cell microfluidic devices for hematological disorders. Analytical Chemistry, 89(22), 11881–11892.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Jabbar, S. A., & Zaza, H. I. (2014). Impact of conflict in Syria on Syrian children at the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. Early Child Development and Care, 184(9–10), 1507–1530.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Jonas, S. M., Deserno, T. M., Buhimschi, C. S., Makin, J., Choma, M. A., & Buhimschi, I. A. (2015). Smartphone-based diagnostic for preeclampsia: An mHealth solution for administering the Congo Red Dot (CRD) test in settings with limited resources. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 23(1), 166–173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Lam, T., Devadhasan, J. P., Howse, R., & Kim, J. (2017). A chemically patterned microfluidic paper-based analytical device (C-μPAD) for point-of-care diagnostics. Scientific Reports, 7(1), 1188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Levin, D. (2015). Openideo – How might we improve education and expand learning opportunities for refugees around the world? – The World’s first Fab Lab in a refugee camp. challenges.openideo.com. Accessed 20 July 2018. https://challenges.openideo.com/challenge/refugee-education/ideas/the-world-s-first-fab-lab-in-a-refugee-camp
  14. Löfgren, J., Nordin, P., Ibingira, C., Matovu, A., Galiwango, E., & Wladis, A. (2016). A randomized trial of low-cost mesh in groin hernia repair. New England Journal of Medicine, 374(2), 146–153.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Makin, J., Suarez-Rebling, D. I., Varma Shivkumar, P., Tarimo, V., & Burke, T. F. (2018). Innovative uses of condom uterine balloon tamponade for postpartum hemorrhage in India and Tanzania. Case Reports in Obstetrics and Gynecology, 2018, 1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Martinez, A. W., Phillips, S. T., Whitesides, G. M., & Carrilho, E. (2009). Diagnostics for the developing world: Microfluidic paper-based analytical devices. Analytical Chemistry, 82, 3–10.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. McNeil, D. (2017). Car mechanic dreams up a tool to ease births. nytimes.com. Accessed 11 Aug 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/14/health/new-tool-to-ease-difficult-births-a-plastic-bag.html
  18. Namakula, J., & Witter, S. (2014). Living through conflict and post-conflict: Experiences of health workers in northern Uganda and lessons for people-centred health systems. Health Policy and Planning, 29(suppl_2), ii6–ii14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Operation Hernia. 2018. Operationhernia.org.uk. Accessed 23 July 2018. http://operationhernia.org.uk/about-us/international-connections/
  20. Scaling up life saving innovations for mothers and newborns. 2018. options.co.uk. Accessed 11 Aug 2018. https://www.options.co.uk/news/scaling-life-saving-innovations-mothers-and-newborns
  21. Schvartzman, J. A., Krupitzki, H., Merialdi, M., Betrán, A. P., Requejo, J., Nguyen, M. H., Vayena, E., et al. (2018). Odon device for instrumental vaginal deliveries: Results of a medical device pilot clinical study. Reproductive Health, 15(1), 45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Segre, J. 2013. Chlorhexidine for umbilical cord care: A best buy for newborn health. Healthy Newborn Network. Accessed 15 Aug 2018. https://www.healthynewbornnetwork.org/blog/chlorhexidine-for-umbilical-cord-care-a-best-buy-for-newborn-health/
  23. Sher, D. (2015). Amazing project brings prostheses to Syrian refugee camp with help from ultimaker. 3Dprintingindustry.com. Accessed 26 July 2018. https://3dprintingindustry.com/news/amazing-project-brings-prostheses-to-syrian-refugee-camp-with-help-from-ultimaker-44213/
  24. Sher, M., Zhuang, R., Demirci, U., & Asghar, W. (2017). Paper-based analytical devices for clinical diagnosis: Recent advances in the fabrication techniques and sensing mechanisms. Expert Review of Molecular Diagnostics, 17(4), 351–366.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. So, A. D., & Ruiz-Esparza, Q. (2012). Technology innovation for infectious diseases in the developing world. Infectious Diseases of Poverty, 1(1), 2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Syedmoradi, L., & Gomez, F. A. (2017). Paper-based point-of-care testing in disease diagnostics. Bioanalysis, 9, 841–843.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. UNICEF Innovation. 2013. Backpack PLUS toolkit created to help empower community health workers – Stories of innovation. Stories of Innovation. Accessed 19 July 2018. https://blogs.unicef.org/innovation/backpack-plus-toolkit-created-to-help-empower-community-health-workers/
  28. Van Berlaer, G., Elsafti, A. M., Al Safadi, M., Souhil Saeed, S., Buyl, R., Debacker, M., Redwan, A., & Hubloue, I. (2017). Diagnoses, infections and injuries in Northern Syrian children during the civil war: A cross-sectional study. PLoS One, 12(9), e0182770.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Wu, J., Dong, M., Rigatto, C., Liu, Y., & Lin, F. (2018). Lab-on-chip technology for chronic disease diagnosis. npj Digital Medicine, 1(1), 7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Zarei, M. (2017). Portable biosensing devices for point-of-care diagnostics: Recent developments and applications. TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry, 91, 26–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Krish W. Ramadurai
    • 1
  • Sujata K. Bhatia
    • 2
  1. 1.Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA
  2. 2.Chemical & Biomolecular EngineeringUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA

Personalised recommendations