Log in or register to follow or vote for this project.
For a population of a million, Zanzibar has 1 poorly-equipped referral hospital. Just 1. In this hospital, it’s an everyday occurrence: a life could easily be saved with a piece of medical technology. But more often than not, that piece of technology is either missing or broken. So more often than not, that patient won’t make it.
As a result, the demand for donated medical technology (DMT) in the developing world – Zanzibar included – is enormous. But 70% of the DMT that makes it to these countries is wasted: it’s disposed of, sold as scrap metal, or simply never used.
DMT in the developing world is wasted because of flaws in the donation process. For example, the donation methodology of most NGOs doesn’t consider the medical needs of the recipient. The result? A hospital facing premature births receives a PCR machine, not the neonatal incubator it needs. Other problems include what we call barriers to utilization, like lack of spare parts and maintenance technicians.
MED International’s goal is to do 2 things: 1) give Zanzibar the DMT it needs, and 2) increase utilization so that none of our DMT is wasted. MED International performs 3 basic functions: supply, delivery, and most importantly, utilization. Supply and delivery are the easy parts: we gather DMT in the US and deliver it to Zanzibar.
Utilization, though, is harder: we not only provide the DMT, but also ensure that it can be used and maintained for years to come. We employ 2 strategies to increase utilization. Our first is excellent matching: we study the needs of our recipient countries, communicate with medical staff on the ground to understand their specifications, and use that information to provide them with the best DMT that matches their needs. Our second practice is barrier elimination: we actively network with partners in the US and in Zanzibar to provide trained technicians, spare parts, user manuals, and consumables so our recipients can fully operate and repair their DMT.
MED International’s job as an official partner of the Government of Zanzibar is to raise Zanzibar’s standard of health care by effectively introducing medical technology into its public hospitals. In doing so, MED International doesn’t stop at just providing DMT. We provide relevant DMT and help the recipient use and maintain it. As a result, DMT that goes through our donation methodology generates maximum social benefit.