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PHN Begins Countdown for Nigeria's First Healthcare Hackathon

February 19, 2014

Following the inauguration of the Nigeria Health Innovation Marketplace (NHIM), the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria (PHN), the public private institution led by Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Mr. Bill Gates, Mr. Jim Ovia, Dr. Muhammad Ali Pate, Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Mrs. Sola David Borha, Muntaqa Umar-sadiq and others, is convening the first ever healthcare hackathon on February 22 at No. 296, Herbert Macaulay Way, Lagos.

The programme is in collaboration with the Ministry of Communications and Technology open data day, the Saving One Million Lives Initiative (SOMLI), NPHCDA, World Bank, Code for Africa, Co-creation hub, Idea hub and Cousant Technologies.

PHN is the country's foremost private sector platform to contribute to the saving of one million lives movement and advance progress in meeting the health Millennium Development Goals (MDGs); by focusing on innovation, partnerships, advocacy and impact investments.

As part of its innovation pillar, PHN is inviting computer programmers, software and mobile application developers, user interface designers, and subject matter analysts to register and participate in the day long healthcare hackathon where household, facility based and programme level health data covering 24 States in the country will be unveiled - mapped against other socio-economic, fiscal and GPRS location data.

Commenting on this, Dangote said: "For too long the asymmetry and dearth of healthcare data has constrained the growth of innovation and limited the application of technological advances in the heath sector."

In his remarks, the Co-chair of PHN, Pate, said: "Private Sector Health Alliance has brokered this innovative marketplace between public sector agencies, who will be disclosing national healthcare data sets and tech innovators who will be developing innovative tech solutions to real public health challenges."

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the Private Sector Health Alliance (PSHA), Muntaqa Umar-sadiq, added that the healthcare hackathon was an important first step in building a data hub for the health sector and sparking the development of mobile based crowd sourcing applications, predictive, surveillance and data collection tools, software performance management programs, visual data analytics and other healthcare tools that if supported to scale could play an enabling role in leapfrogging constraints and advancing Nigeria's progress in meeting the health related MDGs.

During the panel discussion, the Technical lead of SOMLI and Special Adviser to the Minister of Health said one of the pillars of the SOMLI is to expand the use of mobile/ICT technology to improve access to care and data.

The PSHA will provide cash prizes to the top five winning teams and admit selected promising innovations into the PHN health innovation hub, where incubation support as well as linkages to public and private markets will be created and innovations supported to achieve scale. The countdown to the broader health innovation challenge will begin on February 22. To register for the healthcare hackathon please go to

Dangote recently inaugurated a 14-member NHIM steering committee which includes members of the startup community such as the Wennovation Hub, Helios Investment Partners from the investment community, and other private and public sector members such as GSK Pharmaceuticals, Etisalat Telecoms, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), SOMLI and the Centre for Health Market Innovations, among others.

It also has international partners including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, International Partnership for Innovative Healthcare Delivery (IPIHD) at Duke University/WEF, and the Centre for Affordable Healthcare Technology, University of Oxford.

The Group Managing Director of Access Bank Plc, Mr. Herbert Wigwe, will chair the Steering committee while MD/CEO of PSHA will act as the executive secretary of the NHIM Steering committee. NHIM would comprise three core elements; a virtual health innovation portal, health innovation hub/ incubator and health innovation challenges and hackathons.

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Source: AllAfrica

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