Innovation and Impact Newsletter - October 2020

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USAID: From the American People
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Innovation and Impact E-newsletter from the Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact. USAID Global Health

October 2020



Launch of Data and Advanced Analytics in HIV Service Delivery: Use Cases to Help Reach 95-95-95

Report cover: Data and Advanced Analytics in HIV Service Delivery

USAID’s Data and Advanced Analytics in HIV Service Delivery: Use Cases to Help Reach 95-95-95 details high-priority, advanced analytics use cases that could improve HIV service delivery globally. Vast volumes of structured and unstructured data on people living with HIV can provide better insights through the widespread use of advanced analytics techniques, such as clustering to better understand at-risk populations, predictive modeling to estimate the likelihood of risk for an individual, and optimization of ART inventory-- to name a few examples. The report was led by technical advisors from USAID/Southern Africa, the Boston Consulting Group, and CII. Key learnings gained from this analysis can provide a useful launchpad for others seeking new approaches to improve HIV service delivery.


Innovation Icon Innovation

World Economic Forum Sourcing Innovations for COVID-19

World Economic Forum’s UpLink- a digital platform used to crowdsource innovations to address the world’s most pressing problems- in collaboration with Impact Partners, recently launched a series of challenges to source innovative solutions and policy perspectives to respond, recover and rebuild from the COVID-19 pandemic. From 300+ candidates, the effort has surfaced a diverse cohort of 15 innovators representing different regions and addressing various thematic areas, including access to healthcare. CII’s Director, Amy Lin, served on the Expert Review Committee along with leadership from the UN World Food Programme, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, and Novartis.

Close up of coronavirus: Submit your idea to address social inequalities within the COVID-19 response and recovery.

Digital Health Icon Market Shaping

Project Last Mile Supports Ubuntu Cloth Masks for South Africa

USAID/Southern Africa, the British High Commission, and Project Last Mile (PLM)- a USAID flagship partner managed by CII and USAID/Office of HIV and AIDS- is working in South Africa to support local manufacturing of essential supplies and equipment required for the COVID-19 response. One of the first manufacturers selected is Ubuntu Cloth Mask, a public-private partnership between the Western Cape Government, local textile manufacturers and NGOs. PLM’s support will allow Ubuntu to produce a target of over 100,000 three-layer cloth face masks, which will be produced by community seamstresses. Moreover, every mask sold translates into a free mask to a vulnerable community through a one-to-one sales model.

A child wearing a protective mask: Support the Ubuntu cloth mask initiative

Digital Health icon. Innovation

SL@B Innovator Simprints Wins Transformational Business Award

Saving Lives at Birth (SL@B) Grand Challenge innovator Simprints was honored as the health category winner in the Financial Times/Innovative Financing Conference Transformational Business Awards. On October 8th, the Financial Times and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) gathered senior investors, innovators, social entrepreneurs, and other thought leaders for an online event to honor the winners with cutting-edge dialogue on the challenges facing the developing world as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Women discuss prenatal care
FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards 2020 - Transformational Solutions in Health, Wellness and Disease Prevention - 8 October 2020



USAID Perspective for UHC Pavilion Series by Devex and MSD for Mothers

As part of a United Nations General Assembly side event, CII’s innovative finance advisor, Monisha Ashok, spoke about the USAID Global Health Bureau’s commitments to use private sector engagement and innovative financing to advance our collective reproductive, maternal, and child health goals. She sent a short pre-recorded message and questioned high-level panelists convened by Devex and MSD for Mothers as part of the UHC Pavilion series about strengthening innovative financing to improve maternal-child health and nutrition. See here for her comments and the panel discussion will be available here.

Bridging the RMNCAH gap: Delivering UHC for mothers in the era of COVID-19


October 13-15, 2020
Women Leaders in Global Health Conference

October 16, 2020
Financing a Global Public Health Response
Center for Global Development

October 19-21, 2020
2020 Grand Challenges Annual Meeting
Global Grand Challenges

October 29, 2020
Villgro Africa Launch
Villgro Kenya


broadcast bars News

UBS Optimus
UBS Optimus Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund
October 2020

GSMA Innovation Fund for Assistive Tech
October 2020

AI Can Help Diagnose Some Illnesses—If Your Country Is Rich
October 11, 2020

Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative
September 28, 2020

Office of Secretary - Department of State
COVID-19 Private Sector Engagement & Partnership Fund
August 5, 2020


broadcast bars CII NEWS

The New Yorker
A Life-Saving Race Against Time and Traffic, in “Blood Rider”
September 16, 2020

Business Elites Africa
Exclusive: How Keheala Delivers Non-medical Healthcare Across Africa Via Feature Phones
September 23, 2020

World Economic Forum
To achieve the Great Reset, we will need more than just the actions of the powerful
September 23, 2020

GHTC applauds inclusion of globally focused investments in COVID-19 emergency bill but notes vital gaps in USAID global health funding
September 29, 2020


book icon What We're Reading

Center for Global Development
An Expanded Tool to Estimate the Net Health Impact of COVID-19 Policies

World Economic Forum
COVID-19 Action Agenda Leaders on the Front Line: Why Social Entrepreneurs Are Needed Now More than Ever [PDF, 5.6MB]

Clinton Health Access Initiative
The state of the HIV market in low- and middle-income countries [PDF, 2.5MB]

Data-Driven Investor on Medium
Digital Health Goes to Market!

Sway by The New York Times podcast
The Man Behind America’s Race for a Vaccine


book icon We're Hiring

Senior Innovative Financing Advisor



Photo of Margaret Melville

Ankunda Kariisa, Innovation Advisor

Ankunda Kariisa is an Associate Innovation Advisor at CII. Most recently, Ankunda completed an AAAS Science and Technology Policy fellowship with USAID’s Digital Finance practice where she played a key role supporting the team's sector integration work, with a specific focus on global health and agriculture. Prior to joining USAID, Ankunda was a post-doctoral researcher in Microbiology at the University of Washington in Seattle where she worked on antibiotic resistance. She obtained a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, studying cholera, and a Bachelor of Science in Physiology with a minor in Pharmacology and Therapeutics from McGill University.

Read Ankunda's full interview here [PDF, 755KB].


USAID's Center for Innovation and Impact (CII) takes a business-minded approach to fast-tracking the development, introduction and scale-up of health interventions that address the world's most important health challenges. CII invests seed capital in the most promising ideas and novel approaches, using forward-looking business practices to cut the time it takes to transform discoveries in the lab to impact on the ground.

Learn more