Lean Med has made it to the final round of judging for the 2020 UnitaidExplore Challenge. This year, the challenge concerns innovations designed to increase access to oxygen therapy. For the final round, Lean Med participated in Pitch Day on April 24, and is currently awaiting the final decision.
The UnitaidExplore Challenge is a new funding mechanism directed at innovations addressing global health. Unitaid supports innovations that have transformative potential to improve public health in low- and middle-income countries. UnitaidExplore aims to complement the current focus of Unitaid’s portfolio on innovation, by targeting smaller projects with potential for large change.
In its inaugural year, Unitaid has chosen to focus its efforts on addressing access to oxygen therapy in low and middle-income countries. The World Health Organization (W.H.O.) has declared oxygen an essential service in health facilities and hospitals, and yet only a minority have reliable supplemental oxygen for patient use. The impact of this is especially evident in the treatment of pediatric pneumonia. Pediatric pneumonia claims over 800,000 lives every year, with 99% coming from developing nations. A large contributor is that children in these environments are unable to reach oxygen in time. For that reason, we are grateful that Unitaid has decided to support the work of companies like Lean Med in facing this issue.