July Block Party

Two Health-Related Posner Tenants Share Their Models

July’s Posner Center Block Party brought together two of our newer tenants, African Strategies for Advancing Pathology (ASAP) and D-Rev. Both groups focus on strengthening health systems, but approach this work in very different ways, and their presentations shed light on each of their approaches. Special thank you to our friends at Collegiate Peaks Bank for generously supporting this event and providing a delicious lunch!

ASAP discussed the importance of pathology as a medical skill in sub-Saharan Africa, citing that 70% of medical decisions are determined by pathology. ASAP was founded to address the gap between need and demand for pathology in sub-Saharan Africa. ASAP functions on a membership model, composed of expert, experiences pathologists who are either currently work in SSA or have extensive experience in the region. ASAP increases pathology knowledge of African health professionals through training, directing resources to labs, and raising the profile of pathology through publications and workshops.

Currently, ASAP is engaged in a partnership Posner Center Member, emBOLDen Alliances. Together the groups are working to develop a Global Pathology Workforce Capacity Assessment, to address the lack of data regarding the distribution of pathology expertise around the globe.

D-Rev is exploring another aspect of the health field in the developing world; working to remove the quality gap found in most healthcare systems, by delivering quality technology at an affordable price. The example used during the BlockParty was their ReMotion Knee. The ReMotion knee was designed with the actual users in-mind; it has been tested in rugged climates and provides mobility for a variety of actions that are common in the daily life of its user, such as riding a motorcycle and sitting for prayer. Moreover, the knee fills a niche in the prosthetic market as the other models available are either expensive with a good range of mobility, or affordable with little mobility. Whereas the limited motion single axis knee model generally costs $105, the ReMotion Knee only costs $80. Perhaps most notably the ReMotion Knee runs on friction and not electricity, which is important for many of its users who do not have access to electricity to charge their prosthetic limb.

The complexities of health care in the developing world left room for numerous questions from the audience. One of the more encompassing questions was “What is the main obstacle for your organization at this point? Where do you see yourselves going in the future?”

For D-Rev, they know they have an innovative and affordable product, and they want to share this project far and wide through other markets to have the most possible impact. This often means teaming up with large distributors. However, the issue with teaming up with distributors is that they often lose their direct connection the end user and miss out on some valuable feedback about their product.

For ASAP, the main obstacle to their organization involves fundraising. As their organization functions within a very specific, and “unsexy” field, it is challenging to find funders who understand of the importance of pathology. The majority of their funding is currently through the National Institute of Health, which is extremely competitive and currently unreliable.

To attend similar events at the Posner Center as well as our monthly Block Party, check out our event calendar!