Innovation and Invention Improving Access to Healthcare

Lack of access to healthcare is affected by many factors, one of which is lack of healthcare professionals in many areas of the world. Inventors and entrepreneurs are bringing healthcare and ingenious, portable equipment to people where they live. The Cardio-Pad, a portable heart health monitor and PEEK eye exam smartphone attachment, were invented in response to lack of access to sophisticated, bulky medical equipment. 

A drone releases a blood package during the visit of World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim in a drone port project run by Zipline Inc. at Muhanga District, southern Rwanda on March 21, 2017 during his visit to witness the impact of key government initiatives supported by the World Bank. (Photo credit: CYRIL NDEGEYA/AFP/Getty Images)

Healthcare access is also limited by geography. Innovations like Zipline’s drone delivery service are improving access to blood products for patients in remote areas. Unreliable power resources can render some medical equipment useless, so innovative products like the FREO2 Siphon oxygen machine, which is powered by water pressure instead of electricity, can save lives.

 The article authors argue that intellectual property rights support inventors and innovators as they bring these remarkable devices to market. The continued development and innovation of practical solutions to health challenges on the ground is increasing access to healthcare in developing countries.



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