[opensourcepharma] updated Ebola Grand Challenge by White House OSTP, DOD and USAID

Els Torreele els.torreele at opensocietyfoundations.org
Tue Oct 28 14:59:02 UTC 2014


An update to the previous announcement, with a specific call for proposals related to “Approaches to enhance the

protective equipment, care setting and tools used in the field to empower and protect healthcare workers” and “Approaches that ensure communities receive and respond to timely, accurate, and actionable information about Ebola prevention and treatment”


II. Solutions Sought

For the purposes of this Addendum USAID and partners specifically seek solutions that

address the two focus areas below. 2

1) STRENGTHEN HEALTHCARE CAPACITIES: Approaches to enhance the

protective equipment, care setting and tools used in the field to empower

and protect healthcare workers

• Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): Developing, testing, and scaling

entirely novel PPE or modifications to current PPE that address issues

of heat stress and comfort for healthcare workers

• Care Setting: Accelerating the development and scale-up of

approaches to enhance the physical and procedural care environment

relating to heat stress, comfort and the safety of healthcare workers

and patients

• Health Care Worker Tools: Accelerating the development and scale of

tools that improve the delivery of care to patients (e.g. rapid, point of

care diagnostics or more efficient ways of moving samples and

communicating results back to health care workers quickly)

2) CARE-SEEKING: Approaches that ensure communities receive and respond

to timely, accurate, and actionable information about Ebola prevention and


• Developing and scaling behavior change approaches to encourage—

and dispel myths and misconceptions that discourage—care-seeking

or interacting with health care authorities

• Improved information management and communication to the

community on availability of beds in community care centers or

emergency treatment facilities

USAID and its partners seek both innovators with novel solutions and resource partners
with the ability to test and scale up innovations. We are particularly interested in
resource partners with, but not limited to, the following capabilities:
• Ability to rapidly prototype and produce manufacture-ready products
• Ability to deploy solutions in contexts worldwide, particularly West Africa
• Ability to produce or improve any existing technologies currently in use
• Capacity and willingness to partner to test identified solutions
Generally we are looking for expressions of interest that clearly demonstrate the
following attributes:
• Innovation, including creativity of the given approach and clear differentiation
from existing approaches.
• Low-cost and ability to be scaled rapidly
• Strong likelihood of achieving a substantial impact.3
• Solutions that can be deployed and have an impact in the near-term (2-3 months
of initial investment) or longer-term (within a year of initial investment), and
improve the response to the current Ebola epidemic as well as future outbreaks.
Specifically with respect to personal protective equipment we are looking for
expressions of interest that may include but are not limited to:
• Solutions (new or modified PPE kit or other innovative solutions) that allow
much longer work periods, use less PPE, require fewer removals, generate less
infectious waste and offer enhanced protection.
• New innovative barrier materials (e.g., antimicrobial treatments, nano-fibers,
novel polymers and coatings, new finishing technologies, application of plasma
processing and special reinforcements, using new nonwoven fiber bonding
technologies, breathable membranes, etc.) that allow the same level of
protection provided by the PPE today, but with higher levels of air and water
vapor permeability, and breathability.
• PPE that is fully reusable.
• Low cost, next generation sensor technologies to seamlessly assess heat stress
noninvasively when wearing PPE, including possible integration into the PPE to
provide real-time monitoring and decision making on PPE use.
• Modified PPE for use in non-health care settings (e.g. airport or security
checkpoint screening, burials, etc.)
• Portable personal cooling technologies that can be integrated into or compatible
with existing PPE ensembles that are suitable for resource limited environments
• Inexpensive, easily cleanable, and integrated powered air purifying respirators
equipped with a hood or faceshield that can provide multi-functional protection
(facial barrier protection and respiratory protection), while simultaneously
cooling the facial region
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