The global health innovation space can be crowded and confusing. Everyone is looking for ways to expand access to quality, affordable care, but one-size-fits-all solutions are nearly impossible to find. An innovation that works well in Africa is not always going to be successful in Mexico or Vietnam or India. The recent International Partnership of Innovative Healthcare Delivery (IPIHD) Annual Forum held in Washington, D.C., explored the topic of health innovation replication across populations and from our vantage point, there are some guideposts that can help innovators, funders and policymakers get a better handle on how to work effectively in the health innovation space.
IPIHD’s mission is to increase access around the world to affordable, quality health care. We do this by identifying the most promising innovative health care entrepreneurs around the world and then helping these organizations scale up their work. Our annual forum is an opportunity to bring our vibrant community of 55 innovators operating in 47 countries together with corporate supporters, social impact investors, academics and other leaders across health care and impact investing and learn together.
The highlight of the event for many attendees was meeting our new cohort of 2015 IPIHD innovators. These entrepreneurs are working in Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, India, Kenya, Vietnam and many other countries on problems as diverse as health education for family members of inpatients, menstrual health, emergency training for health workers and new ways of delivering care through community kiosks.
From our vantage point, three main themes emerged from their work and the discussions we had throughout the event.