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Awardees Announced for the DR-TB Lifeline QuickFire Challenge

September 16, 2020 -
10 months ago
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September 16 — Johnson & Johnson’s Global Public Health team, together with Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS, announced today that DOCTORS FOR YOU, De La Salle Medical and Health Sciences Institute, Keheala, TBpeopleUkraine, and ZMQ Global have been selected as the awardees in the Drug Resistant-TB Lifeline QuickFire Challenge.

COVID-19 has caused significant disruptions in care for patients with drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) around the world, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. The Challenge was designed to help ensure continuity of care for people with DR-TB and build stronger, more resilient TB health systems for the future - starting by supporting community-based organizations at the frontlines of care.

The awardees each pitched innovations and potential solutions that aim to bring care closer to home and overcome treatment barriers facing people with TB around the globe during this time. In connection with our overall commitment to supporting frontline healthcare workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Johnson & Johnson is proud to award the finalists a combined total of $250,000 in grant funding and provide them with mentorship as they scale up their innovations.

    • This India-based nonprofit’s sustainable potential solution uses telemedicine via WhatsApp & Uber-style delivery services to continue providing critical DR-TB care services remotely, to help deliver on the goals of India’s National Tuberculosis Elimination Program (NTEP).
  • De La Salle Medical and Health Sciences Institute (The Philippines)
    • Health workers in the Philippines developed this simple application, which can be downloaded to any smartphone and aims to support treatment compliance by allowing caregivers to review patient dosage information. It works with asynchronized Video Observed Therapy (VOT) technology.
  • Keheala (Kenya)
    • Keheala is a digital adherence technology that uses behavioral economics and basic feature phones with the aim to 'nudge' and support patients with information and motivation throughout their treatment process. The platform has been demonstrated to improve treatment outcomes for TB patients in facilities across Nairobi, Kenya.
  • TBpeopleUkraine (Ukraine)
    • TBpeopleUkraine, a charitable organization founded by a TB survivor, unites the efforts of affected communities and people personally involved in fighting TB challenges. The team is scaling up the OneImpact mobile application which aims to empower the TB community by supporting adherence and implementing a patient-centered approach to treatment and care. Patients can use the app both to report barriers related to availability, accessibility and quality of TB services as well as to tackle COVID-19 challenges. All cases raised are followed-up by a call center representative within 24 hours with the aim to help resolve the matter.
  • ZMQ Global (India)
    • The Montreal, Canada-based ZMQ team works in India and Africa and has developed the Patient’s Active Compliance and Treatment toolkit (PACT). This mobile solution uses Video Observed Therapy (VOT) to empower patients with adherence reporting; connect them with remote health consultations and emergency care; and uses behavior change tools with the aim to promote treatment adherence.

The QuickFire Challenges are managed by Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS, with the aim to address today’s greatest health care challenges.

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About Johnson & Johnson’s Global Public Health

Charting a bold new, self-sustainable approach, Johnson & Johnson has established the first fully-dedicated organization within a healthcare company focused on combining innovative R&D, novel access programs & approaches, in-country operations, advocacy and the power of multi-sectoral partnerships to ensure that treatments and technologies are available, affordable and accessible for the world's most under-served populations. Harnessing the extensive resources and expertise from across Johnson & Johnson, its Global Public Health team is placing an unparalleled focus on accelerating the pace of innovation needed – from discovery to delivery – to make TB and HIV history, eliminate intestinal worms, address mental health and wrestle other public health challenges. Learn more at www.jnj.com/global-public-health and follow us @JNJGlobalHealth.

About Johnson & Johnson Innovation

Johnson & Johnson Innovation LLC focuses on accelerating all stages of innovation worldwide and forming collaborations between entrepreneurs and Johnson & Johnson’s global healthcare businesses. Johnson & Johnson Innovation provides scientists, entrepreneurs and emerging companies with one-stop access to science and technology experts who can facilitate collaborations across the pharmaceutical, medical device and consumer companies of Johnson & Johnson. Under the Johnson & Johnson Innovation umbrella of businesses, we connect with innovators through our regional Innovation Centers; Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS; Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JJDC, Inc.; and our business development teams to create customized deals and novel collaborations that speed development of innovations to solve unmet needs in patients. JLABS provides the laboratories, expertise, education, tools and resources needed to help life science startups thrive, all with no strings attached. A Johnson & Johnson Innovation Center for Device Innovation at the Texas Medical Center (CDI @ TMC) has been established to accelerate the development of medical devices. For more information about Johnson & Johnson Innovation, please visit: www.jnjinnovation.com .

About Johnson & Johnson Innovation - JLABS

Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS (JLABS) is a global network of open innovation ecosystems, enabling and empowering innovators across a broad healthcare spectrum including pharmaceutical, medical device, consumer and health tech sectors to create and accelerate the delivery of life-saving, life-enhancing health and wellness solutions to patients around the world. JLABS achieves this by providing the optimal environment for emerging companies to catalyze growth and optimize their research and development by opening them to vital industry connections, delivering entrepreneurial programs and providing a capital-efficient, flexible platform where they can transform the scientific discoveries of today into the breakthrough healthcare solutions of tomorrow. At JLABS, we value great ideas and are passionate about removing obstacles to success to help innovators unleash the potential of their early scientific discoveries. JLABS is a no-strings-attached model, which means entrepreneurs are free to develop their science while holding on to their intellectual property. JLABS also produces campaigns to seek out the best science called QuickFire Challenges. For more information, visit www.jlabs.jnjinnovation.com or follow @JLABS.

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