Nigerian innovation team wins US varsity fund for healthcare solutions

The governance innovation accelerator, Ekiti team, has won the technical and funding support for healthcare solutions from a leading United States university, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Governance Lab, to boost healthcare delivery in Nigeria using technology.

The Ekiti State government had partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Governance Lab, (MIT/GOVLAB), and launched the governance innovation lifecycle challenge and accelerator in December 2021.

The programme was aimed at improving health service delivery, specifically in health security and quality of care. It brought together two teams of the state’s civil servants to develop innovation-driven solutions to solve problems in the health sector.

The programme which spanned six months ushered in technology-driven solutions to address quality of care, epidemiology and surveillance issues in Ekiti, according to a statement by Oyebanji Filani, commissioner for health and human services in Ekiti,

The commissioner said the innovation framework, GIF, was a process that public sector organisations must adopt to accelerate delivery service and advance innovative solutions in Ekiti State.

Filani, while noting that civil servants are the drivers of policy implementation in the public sector, advocated for intensive training in a bid to improve their approach to public issues.

Read also: ‘Why quality in Nigeria’s healthcare must be measured’

He said: “The innovation framework is a process that public sector organisations like the ministry of health can use to improve processes in the public system. This will enable us to birth and sustain innovative solutions that respond to the needs of Ekiti people and improve service delivery.

“Civil servants are the drivers of policy implementation in the public sector and they have great potential to improve the way they solve problems, if given the opportunity and trained accordingly. Our aim is to build the capacity of our civil servants because they are there for the long haul.”

Carlos Centeno, an associate director, Innovation at MIT GOV/LAB, said the Qualicare team that won the challenge would receive full funding and support to implement their solution, certificate of accelerator completion from MIT GOV/LAB, and an opportunity to present their solutions to other development organisations in Boston USA.

The lead design for health at co-creation hub, Temi Filani, pledged that it would continue to advance innovations to improve the health of Ekiti people and Nigeria at large.

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