Design Expo 2014: Online Discussion - Enhancing Health Outcomes

This online panel discussion at 3.30 UK time on Tuesday 10 June will explore the following questions:

  1. What are some of the key health challenges where business innovation can make a difference at scale?
  2. What are the key drivers for achieving better health outcomes at the base of the pyramid - is it just a matter of better products, or are the other factors such as better distribution or better community engagement?
  3. How can private sector products and distribution systems better connect with government systems?

Panelists include: Jack Castle and Carey Carpenter, Living Goods; Simon Berry, Cola Life; Erica Frenkel, Gradian Health; Ramil Burden, GlaxoSmithKline; Donika Dimovska, Program Director, Results for Development Institute; Julia Watson, DFID.

Editor's Note:

This is a text-only, written discussion.  To post comments you will need to sign in / sign up to Business Fights Poverty. A list of recent comments is shown in the right-hand side bar and will refresh every 5 minutes. To refresh more often, please click on the refresh icon in your browser.

This event is part of the Business Fights Poverty Design Expo 2014. Running from 9 to 13 June,  the Design Expo is an online celebration of products, services and business models transforming the lives of poor people.  The Design Expo is a collaboration with iDE UK and is being supported by the UK's Department for International Development.

The Expo will include a vibrant mix of blogs, Google Hangouts, online panel discussions, a Twitter Jam and a virtual exhibition zone. Each day we will focus on a different sector: Energy (9 June), Health (10 June), Communications (11 June), Livelihoods (including enterprise, finance and agriculture) (12 June) and Water & Sanitation (13 June).

From Monday 9 June, you will be able to access all the activities via the Design Expo landing page,  Participation in the Design Expo is free.  You will simply need to sign in (or sign up for free) to Business Fights Poverty.


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Greetings from ColaLife in sunny Zambia.

And from DFID in a surprisingly sunny London

Hello from Living Goods in Uganda!

Good morning from Gradian Health in sunny New York.

Unfortunately not so sunny in Uganda today!

Welcome to the online written discussion on enhancing access to health.  We're joined by a great panel.

Let's start with the first questions:

Q1: What are some of the key health challenges where business innovation can make a difference at scale?

Are you from Living Goods Carey?

Hi everyone, Ramil from GSK here. Looking forward to the discussion.


Hello from the Center for Health Market Innovations!

I would say this wouldn't I?

Diarrhoea both on the prevention and treatment sides.


On PREVENTION see for example Spring Health - - safe drinking water. And there's a water solution in this Expo (which I can't find at the moment).

Some say the provision of safe water is not a “public health issue” it’s a “business model issue”.


On TREATMENT see ColaLife – – We know how to traet diarrhoea to stop children dying. We’ve known for 10 years yet less that 1% of children are receiving the recommended treatment of ORS and Zinc. In 12 months ColaLife got this up to 45% in two remote rural districts in Zambia through the design of an appropriate product AND its value chain. Headline results are here:


The key thing about diarrhoea is that the treatment is safe, there isn’t a complicated algorithm that needs to be followed at the point of sale (ie in all cases, if your child has diarrhoea you need this product) and the medicines are ‘over the counter’ (or should be) and so any retailer can sell them – they don’t need to be a ‘health shop’ or ‘pharmacy’. AND they are cheap.

One of the key areas is around frontline health workers. We know there's not enough of them and business can play a key role in investing in them, training in them and giving them the toolkit to reach more people in the hardest to reach areas. At GSK, we invest 20% of our profits made in the least developed countries into this activity. We do this in partnership with the local community and the ministry of health. This partnership approach is vital to its long-term sustainbility.

Absolutely agree.  This is a great example.  Plenty of behaviour change challenges, but nothing complicated about the technology.

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