Weekly News Roundup
News, Events and Observations about Health Markets in the Developing World
The Microinsurance Network has partnered with the Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI) and the Microinsurance Innovation Facility to centralize information gathering and knowledge sharing for micro-insurance health programs in low- and middle- income countries. The partnership has helped to enrich CHMI's database, which now includes more than 120 distinct health insurance products designed for low-income populations in developing countries. Click here to learn more about the partnership and microinsurance in general.
Social Enterprise Buzz recently posted an article on the unprecedented involvement of investment banks in the developing world. Due to uncertain an economic environment and the resulting need to seek newer and more diverse investments it seems that investment banks have begun dipping their toes into “impact investing” - a type of investment that takes considerations of the social impact of an investment along with traditional financial concerns. Read more about this interesting trend here.
In a historical move, funds allocated to states under India’s flagship National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) will be cut by almost 15% if they fail to place doctors and health workers to districts with the worst health index. Many low-and-middle income countries (LMIC) have issues revolving around sufficient physician placement, absenteeism, and general performance. This effort is just one of many recent methods that countries such as India have been exploring in the hopes of solving some of these issues. Click here to read more.
The CDC has recently weighed in that research released last year establishing a link between contraceptive hormones and a heightened risk to HIV-transmission has not been sufficiently been established. This news came with particularly warm welcome as pregnancy itself also increases the risk of HIV-transmission and is accompanied by many other health issues which are only exacerbated by external factors (low quality healthcare, unavailability of physicians, etc.) inherent to the areas hardest hit by HIV. Read more about the CDC’s recent decision here.
According to Ben Armstrong and Luis Arbulu, more than 2.5 billion people (mostly in Africa and South Asia) face grave sanitation challenges; in many of these countries, people are more likely to own a cell phone than a toilet. In order to solve this problem a novel approach using mobile games has been devised. Games for Change a game developer that targets its games towards social challenges has begun to devise games involving sanitation issues to help alleviate this persistent problem. Read more about this unique approach here.
The New York Times recently released an article on a new type of financing for organizations in the non-profit world – “philanthropic equity”. Many non-profits run on a variety of grants with related, but not always identical, goals often making it difficult for an organization to scale-up. With the help of organizations such as the Nonprofit Finance Fun Capital Division which help raise grants (philanthropic equity) that mimic the institution-building function of for-profit equity however, things look to be changing. Learn more about this phenomenon here.
Results for Development’s Transparency and Accountability Program will sponsor up to ten organizations to design and implement a Community Score Card (CSC) project and related advocacy that focuses on improving how money is spent and how services are delivered in the health and education sectors in their countries. Application to the Grants Program is open to any non-government organization from target countries in sub-Saharan African (Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Rwanda, Senegal, Tanzania, and Uganda). The deadline for applications is June 29, 2012. To learn more about this grant round, including how to apply, please visit the TAP grants page.
The 2012 mHealth Summit, the premier international forum for connecting the mobile health ecosystem to mHealth research, education, and thought leadership has issued a call for presentations for their December 3-5 event. The summit will feature its first ever Global Health track, which will showcase applications for mHealth topics in the global health field. Learn more and share your experience and expertise by submitting your proposal here and registering here. The submission deadline for presentations is June 29th (TOMORROW) at 12pm so make sure to submit your proposal soon!
As a reminder, The ILO Microinsurance Innovation Facility, an organization under the International Labour Organization (ILO) and one of the financers of the Microinsurance Network, is putting on an interactive webinar to promote the Microinsurance Compendium Vol II, a publication that covers the major trends of the microinsurance sector. The webinar will include a presentation on microinsurance trends, a short presentation from guest authors and experts on the microinsurance sector, and a Q&A session for online participants. The event next week Tuesday, July 3rd, from 4:00pm-6:30pm EST and you can learn more about the event here and register for free here. Register as soon as possible to guarantee your participation!