Healthcare Sees Emerging Future in Frugal Innovation

Source:

"Big companies like General Electric and Siemens, which build some of the world's most complex and costly pieces of the healthcare kit, are working to develop cheaper medical devices that can secure sales in emerging markets and potentially win business at home."

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Reuters, Kate Kelland

When Argentinian car mechanic Jorge Odon was joking around with friends about how to get a cork out of an empty wine bottle using only a plastic bag, his thoughts were a long way from problem of maternal mortality.

Yet in the middle of the night, it struck him that the problem with the cork and the bottle was remarkably similar to obstructed labor, when a baby can't get through the birth canal and puts its own and its mother's life at risk.

Despite his wife's skepticism—when he shook her awake to tell her his brilliant idea, she apparently told him to go back to sleep—Odon patented his idea, got partners on board and developed the "Odon device," which is now in trials.

If the enthusiasm shown by Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organisation (WHO), is borne out, he'll go down in history as inventor of the first new assisted delivery device since vacuum suction and forceps were introduced decades and centuries ago. . .View Full Article

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