A look back at one year of xRapid in Papua, Indonesia

In a recent interview, Digicape Managing Director Robin Olivier stated that his company, xRapid’s distributor in South Africa, “is proud to be supporting the innovative work that xRapid has put into developing the solution that is so simple to use but also empowering to the health care and aid workers, patients, families, and communities”. In order to develop a product that is tuned to its user, xRapid works indeed in close partnership with early adopters.

In a previous post, xRapid introduced you to a health practitioner who work in Papua, the easternmost province of Indonesia. Despite the unfavourable environment:  unstable internet, short medical supplies, no infrastructures, the nurse is still providing health care services to the local communities. One year ago, she decided to fight malaria on a deeper level by incorporating xRapid-Malaria into her daily nurse routine.

The automated diagnostic test is particularly helpful in times of emergency or epidemic, as it is right now in the era. Malaria cases have been increasing due to the strike of a strep infection which weakens the immune system. The nurse declared that while she was diagnosing one of her patient with the automated diagnostic test: “In one of the fields (out of 10) the malaria parasite total was 900. Yes, the patient was very ill. Most of my patients of last week came up positive for P. falciparum”.

 

As usual, she was the first to test the new version of xRapid-Malaria. She thought that the thick smear option was more fitted to her work. “Well, I was never an expert at doing a thin blood slide, so it’s great to have the option of a thick smear. It works way better for me as I run a clinic, where people are not just sick with malaria. It allows me to process the slides later one; as opposed to being a lab technician who can process the slides immediately.”.

We look forward to collaborating with her on the future versions of xRapid-Malaria app.

To be continued…

African leaders adopt roadmap to eliminate malaria

Last month, the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) endorsed a new roadmap to eliminate malaria by 2030. Founded in 2009, ALMA is a coalition of 49 African heads of state and government working to eliminate this dreadful disease.

“Today, Africa’s leaders have again shown their commitment to the fight to end malaria, HIV/AIDS, and TB by adopting the Catalytic Framework to End AIDS, TB and Eliminate Malaria by 2030 with clear targets and milestones. Through our continued leadership and increased cooperation to finance and provide life-saving anti-malaria interventions, we can sustain our momentum and achieve malaria, HIV/AIDS and TB-free Africa” – Idriss Deby Itno, President of Chad and Chair of ALMA.

The coalition fights the disease by providing a forum to review progress and address challenges, implementing a monitoring and accountability system as well as identifying and sharing lessons learned. They also enact policies such as the ban of ineffective therapies, the removal of tariffs on tools that fight the disease and the establishment of community case management.

“It wasn’t long ago that an Africa without malaria seemed like an impossible dream. Today, that dream is becoming a reality, thanks to the most powerful weapon we have in the malaria fight: strong leadership” – H.E Hailemariam Dessalegn, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and past Chair of ALMA.

Fancy trying our new automated Plasmodium identifier?

After developing the first version of xRapid-Lab in partnership with few Tropical Medicine Institutes, xRapid would be delighted to provide you with the Plasmodium identifier for free and as long as you need. Comments and suggestions will be welcomed in order to develop a new version that will match every researcher’s identification and counting needs.

If you want to take part in the development of a disruptive identifier, contact us at info@xrapid.com

In the meantime, you can watch all the features that have been added so far:

Malaria control initiatives: a focus on Tanzania

Malaria is a major public health problem in Tanzania, all residents are at a risk of infection. WHO estimates that 60 000 to 80 000 malaria deaths occur annually, among all ages.

Tanzania has long been committed to the fight against this dreadful disease, especially in the semi-autonomous region of Zanzibar. Since 2006, the prevalence of malaria dropped from 25 to less than 1 percent in the archipelago thanks to malaria control projects such as those initiated by the US President Malaria Initiative (PMI). Programs initiated in Tanzania focused mainly on Diagnosis and treatment, 30% of the malaria control allocation (2000-2010), as well as the delivery of Insecticide-Treated Nets (ITNs), 48%.

Through collaboration with the private sector and nongovernmental organisations (NGOs), the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare created a system of producing and distributing mosquito nets to reach the whole country, whose efficiency has been recognised by its peers.

Nets showed great results in preventing malaria but International Organisations such as WHO stress the importance of implementing accurate, cheap and easy-to-use drugs as well as diagnostic tools to end malaria for good. Tanzania took action on this issue since the second objectives of the National Malaria Strategic Plan (2014-2020) is to “Prevent the occurrence of severe morbidity and mortality related to malaria infection through the promotion of universal access to appropriate early diagnosis, prompt treatment, and provision of preventing therapies and vaccines to vulnerable groups.” To achieve this goal, the government, NGOs, researchers as well as the private sector have to work closely so that Tanzania can enforce the best solutions. With its automated malaria diagnostic test, xRapid can be part of the answer.

New iOS developer to join xRapid’s team

We are happy to report that Daniel Schmidt has joined our team. He is a young developer with experience both in back- and front-end development and has followed the first experimental Apple developer curriculum in Brazil.

« I am very happy to join a company such as xRapid who combine both tech and medical engineering in its mission to improve people’s health through accessible technology » – Daniel Schmidt