Technology Solutions Global Program

Advancing appropriate, affordable, and accessible technologies to improve the health of developing-country populations

About Technology Solutions

For more than 30 years, PATH has managed a portfolio of projects focused on appropriate technology solutions for the health needs of people living in low-resource settings. With our public- and private-sector partners, we have investigated hundreds of technologies in the areas of maternal and neonatal health, nutrition, water and sanitation, health management information systems, reproductive health, vaccine-related technologies, and diagnostics for infectious and non-communicable diseases. We’ve advanced the most promising technologies to commercial products for use in country health programs and worldwide health campaigns.

The Technology Solutions Global Program develops technologies that are affordable to the public sector in the developing world, accessible in developing-world markets, and acceptable to the communities and cultures that will benefit. We involve users at all stages of the process, from assessing the need and creating the product design to planning for product introduction.

Our work relies on the expertise of multidisciplinary development teams that include public health experts, scientists, technology developers, as well as business and commercialization strategists skilled in product marketability and distribution. Through our leadership, expertise, and technical resources we develop markets and integrate technologies into existing health systems.

Our areas of global health innovation

Diagnostic technologies

Diagnostic strip test being manufactured.

Diagnostic strip test being manufactured. Photo: PATH/Cori Barfield.

Many developing countries face serious challenges in accurately identifying and diagnosing disease due to remote, rural or low-resource settings. To improve diagnosis of diseases at the point-of-care, simple, low-cost tests and devices are being advanced to quickly and accurately test for HIV/STI’s, malaria, tuberculosis, neglected tropical diseases, and noncommunicable diseases. We work with multiple collaborators to design and/or advance molecular diagnostics, immunodiagnostics, and various innovative platforms.

 

Digital health solutions

Technology can be a tool used to strengthen health systems. Man and woman with a laptop.

Technology can strengthen health systems. Photo: PATH/David Jacobs.

The importance of functional health information systems in achieving improved health outcomes continues to grow, yet in many developing countries the current systems and technologies are limiting access to and use of valuable health information. To strengthening these health systems, PATH has developed a systematic approach to evaluating requirements and designing health information systems to meet those needs.

 

Health technologies for women and children

A newborn treated with chlorhexidine to prevent umbilical stump infection.

A newborn treated with chlorhexidine to prevent umbilical stump infection. Photo: PATH/Mutsumi Metzler.

High rates of maternal and perinatal mortality in developing countries indicate a crucial need for innovative health care interventions. Examples of the many interventions that PATH is working on are an affordable antishock garment that acts as a compression device to control blood loss in mothers experiencing postpartum hemorrhage, a cost-effective balloon tamponade that could effectively stop postpartum bleeding within minutes, and noninvasive anemia detection devices. Working with existing technologies, we are increasing the availability and proper use of neonatal resuscitators to help at-risk infants in distress.

 

Reproductive health technologies

Woman smiling.

New solutions for contraception and STI/HIV prevention. Photo: PATH.

Worldwide, women continue to experience significant health consequences because existing contraceptives may not be acceptable, affordable, or accessible. PATH is filling these gaps by advancing women-initiated, dual-protection devices—a Woman’s Condom that that puts affordable protection in women’s hands and the SILCS diaphragm that doesn’t require a physician’s fitting.

 

Vaccine and pharmaceutical technologies

Woman administering an injection using Uniject.

Woman administering an injection using Uniject ™. Photo: PATH/Carib Nelson.

Vaccination against infectious diseases saves millions of lives each year. To help to protect more people from vaccine-preventable diseases, PATH is advancing technologies that improve vaccine products and the ways they are delivered in low-resource settings. We design and adapt user-centered solutions that expand immunization effectiveness, efficiency, and safety—especially in remote communities with limited access to health facilities and refrigeration equipment.

 

Water and sanitation technologies

Girl filling water canisters.

PATH is working to bring safer water to households and communities. Photo: PATH.

In developing countries, water often comes from unsafe sources and can carry deadly pathogens. The World Health Organization reports that 880 million people worldwide rely on unimproved water sources for their drinking water. Our critical work in water has three areas of focus: household water treatment, community water treatment, and water quality testing. We help private-sector partners to manufacture, distribute, and sell household water treatment and storage products such as water filters, chlorine test strips, and ceramic water pots to produce safer clean drinking water.

 

Banner photos, clockwise from left: PATH/Mike Wang; PATH/Satvir Malhotra; Dr. Ahmet Afsar; PATH/Mike Wang; PATH/Patrick McKern.

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