Saving Lives at Birth Grand Challenge Results Announced in Washington, DC

Saving Lives at Birth Grand Challenge Results Announced in Washington, DC

Population Council associate Eric Green was in Washington, DC, 28 July, at the Saving Lives at Birth awards ceremony. USAID and partners Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Grand Challenges Canada, and The World Bank selected the Baby Monitor project and 18 other innovative projects from a field of 77 finalists to receive funding, pending final review.

Baby Monitor will take clinical screening directly to women in the critical period before and after birth. This mobile phone application—to be developed with Council partners at InSTEDD, a developer of open-source software tools—will use interactive voice response technology to detect complications and take action. Women will listen to screening questions in their local language and respond via pressing a key. Baby Monitor will assess responses and, if necessary, send information, make referrals, and dispatch community health workers.

This low-cost application will increase Kenyan mothers’ access to primary health care, improve the quality of service delivery, and make better use of limited numbers of skilled birth attendants and community health workers in resource-poor settings. Baby Monitor is innovative because it will target hard-to-reach patients as end-users of a mobile screening service.


    • “Saving Lives at Birth: Baby Monitor—Connecting women and infants to care,” Eric Green discusses Baby Monitor at the Saving Lives at Birth Grand Challenge (offsite link)
    • Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development (offsite link)
    • Baby Monitor: Connecting Women and Infants to Care (more)
    • InSTEDD (offsite link)
    • Comments by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at the Saving Lives at Birth awards ceremony (offsite link)

About the Population Council
The Population Council is an international, nonprofit, nongovernmental research organization that seeks to improve the well-being and reproductive health of current and future generations around the world and to help achieve a humane, equitable, and sustainable balance between people and resources. The Council conducts biomedical, social science, and public health research and helps build research capacities in developing countries. Established in 1952, the Council is governed by an international board of trustees. Its New York headquarters supports a global network of regional and country offices.


Originally conceived as the result of a 2006 TED Conference Prize, InSTEDD (“Innovative Support To Emergencies, Diseases and Disasters”) is an independent, international 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation created to save lives and reduce suffering through the intelligent use of technology. InSTEDD works with a wide range of valued partners and has received funding from, the Rockefeller Foundation and others.



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