SMART Diaphragm: Two and a Half Years In and Going Strong

Each year about 15 million babies are born prematurely and over one million of these babies die, making preterm birth the leading cause of infant mortality. In developed communities, these premature babies are often given a chance to thrive by spending their first days in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) of hospitals. But in many parts of the world, birth happens in a rural village far away from hospitals and it is impossible for pregnant mothers to make the trip once labor has begun.

Nearly three years ago, our team began tackling the challenge of preterm birth by developing a new type of intravaginal device that enables earlier detection of preterm birth. This “SMART Diaphragm” would use sensors to capture data about a pregnant woman’s cervix over time and transmit that data wirelessly to a cloud platform that would determine whether a woman is likely to give birth preterm. Since then, we have successfully developed more than 10 prototypes of the device and have worked with 20 women in clinical studies who have graciously given us permission to track them throughout pregnancy using our device. More

Bringing Economic Opportunity to the Un-banked: FrontlineSMS:Credit

For citizens of the developed world, the process of transferring, saving and managing money is as simple as visiting one of many bank branches near us or by using a debit card. Making purchases, obtaining loans and establishing credit enable us to purchase a home, start a business or send funds to relatives. In Kenya and many other developing countries, this process is much more difficult.

Without the baseline infrastructure that many of us take for granted, such as an extensive road and highway system or postal service, shipping goods or cash is a risky process. FrontlineSMS:Credit developed our software, PaymentView, for exactly this audience. Leveraging mobile payment systems and existing banking software, we are bringing financial services, including savings, credit, insurance and payroll, to those that traditional banking systems do not reach. Our mission is to effect social change and facilitate transactions in a way that previously wasn’t possible. More