Social Entrepreneurship to reduce Infant Mortality

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More than 10 million low weight and premature children are born each year. They are prone to develop hypothermia a condition where the body fails to maintain the required temperature. Approximately 4 million children die each year as they cannot maintain the required body temperature. Incubators help but are expensive coupled with requirements such as constant electricity, which itself is a rarity in poor rural settings of Asia and Africa. To get around this problem Jane Chen and her team from the Stanford Graduate school of Business worked on an innovative solution and a social enterprise Embrace was born.

Embrace has developed an innovative, low cost infant warmer for vulnerable babies in developing countries. Embrace has developed an infant warmer that costs a fraction of the price of existing solutions, and that functions without a continuous supply of electricity.
The innovation are miniature sleeping bags that incorporates a phase change material, which stays at a constant temperature for up to 6 hours. This low-cost solution maintains premature and low birth weight babies’ body temperature to protect them.

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From Uganda and Somaliland to India , Embrace (non-profit) and Embrace Innovations (for profit social enterprise) has set out to make a positive impact towards maternal and child health as well as women empowerment.

 

Embrace has programs to raise awareness of the devastating impact of hypothermia in premature and low birth weight babies among health care staff, mothers, families and community members. The program also aims to provide complementary health education focused on addressing the root causes of low birth-weight, hypothermia and other maternal/child health issues as relevant to the community and collect monitoring and evaluation data to better understand the program’s impact on maternal and child health outcomes.

 

Photo credits: https://embraceglobal.org/

 



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