Antenatal Disease Diagnosis and Reporting Instrument
We propose developing a new, low cost instrument to rapidly and accurately diagnose and report important diseases of maternal child health (MCH) in rural locations of low and middle income countries. We will start with four important MCH diseases: anemia, HIV, syphilis and malaria. Based on accurate rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs), clinicians will be able to appropriately treat patients: anemic mothers will receive iron supplements; HIV-infected mothers and their newborns will receive anti-HIV treatment; and syphilis and malaria-infected mothers will receive treatment to prevent infant infection and death. Our newly developed hand-held instruments will read, record, and report RDT results in real-time. Via automated wireless reports, health authorities will have real time data on important MCH diseases. This information will enable them to accurately track real-time disease occurrence and make evidence-based decisions on resource and budget re-allocations, if necessary. Current instruments can read single tests, but we need to conduct the experiments and modifications to enable them to read multiple tests, as well as barcodes for supply chain management of pharmaceutical products. With the reported data, we hope to attract additional funders to defray the costs of diagnosing, potentially benefitting the patient at the point of care. Within a few years, we hope to have a diverse group of diagnose & report instruments that will have the capability to sustainably and accurately diagnose all important infectious diseases in LMICs. The seed funds provided by this grant will allow us to start with Saving Lives at Birth.