By Steve Letchford, MD
My answer these days is pretty straightforward. Google Maps drives me.
That’s because my medical career in very-low-income communities has taught me that being one of the world’s poorest patients is a nightmare that you never really wake up from.
But Google Maps has taught me that we can change that. Google Maps saves me 10 minutes on a 30-minute drive across town simply by using vast quantities of real-time GPS traffic movement data to predict slow-downs on my route, redirect me. It isn’t all that complicated.
Google Maps just uses vast quantities of real-time GPS traffic movement data to predict slow-downs on my route, redirect me, and save me 10 minutes on a 30-minute drive across town.
As a doctor I know that good healthcare isn’t all that complicated either.
It just involves processing large amounts of real-time data to get the right diagnosis and the right treatment at the right time.
But somehow we haven’t figured out how to do for the world’s poorest patients what Google Maps does for the world’s wealthy drivers.
After 22 years, I’m so tired of weeping with mothers in the middle of the night because their child just died – and died simply because they got the right healthcare when it was too late. I’m tired of knowing that it took them too long to get the right healthcare because they had so little money.
And so I roll out of bed every morning thinking, “Surely, if technology can transform something like my drive across town, we can figure out how to use it to transform healthcare for the world’s poorest patients.” Banda Health is the story of making that drive become a reality.
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Our team of local developers and programmers listen to healthcare workers as we build and refine BandaGo so that patients get accurate diagnosis and treatment in any Kibanda (hut) in any part of the world with an internet connection. Thank you for being an inspiration to lives.