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Nigerian innovators in the Medical field have exhibited distinguished creatives among other 23 finalists in the World Health Organizations (WHO) Africa Innovation Challenge.

The WHO Innovation challenge is the first of its kind with the aim of improving the health sector in Africa and promoting innovators who through their works are impacting people.

According to WHO Regional Director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti said “This Innovation Challenge recognizes the critical need for innovations to address the continent’s challenges in healthcare. WHO champions the promotion of homegrown solutions to address health challenges in reproductive, maternal and child health, infectious diseases, non-communicable diseases and other key areas? We hope this challenge will spark the entrepreneurial spirit of innovators and lead to credible health innovations across the continent” she said.

This Challenge which prioritize innovative and scalable healthcare solutions for selection in the following three submission categories Product, Service and Social Innovation received over 2,400 applicants. Applications were made from 77 countries.

WHO came up with a list of 30 finalist after Entries have been assessed by a panel of independent evaluators based on the innovation’s potential impact on health in Africa as well as the possibility of being replicated or scaled-up.

The following are the 7 Nigerians among the 30 lists


Dr. Ime Asangansi, is a physician, health informatics specialist and software architect based in Abuja, Nigeria. He is a consultant and researcher in the emerging fields of digital and mobile health, with a special interest in design, implementation and strategy, particularly in the clinical, public health, demography and health insurance domains, and at different levels (community, facility, district, national and global).

He runs a fast growing informatics startup, eHealth4everyone, based in Nigeria, and has been actively involved in the design and development of a number of software systems, including the OpenHDS (Open-source Health and Demographic System) adopted by and running in many INDEPTH sites.

Previously, he was Country Director for the United Nations Foundation ICTs for Saving One Million Lives (ICT4SOML) project in Nigeria, where he led the Nigeria UNF team that supported the Government of Nigeria in drafting the National eHealth Strategic Framework. He holds a medical degree (MBBS) from the University Of Ibadan, Nigeria and a PhD in Informatics from the University of Oslo, Norway.

Asangansi, was qualified through Integrated Supportive Supervision (ISS) and Multi-Source Data Analytics and Triangulation Dashboard: ISS a web-based platform that integrates checklists used by its health partners when conducting integrative supportive supervision. The platform makes this data easily accessible. The Multi-Source Data Analytics and Triangulation Dashboard help to combine multiple data sources on one platform.

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Dr. Ebi Ofreyhas been a medical doctor for close to 16years and a business and blue ocean strategy consultant for about 8 years now and has a certificate in Geriatric Care. He has a degree in medicine and surgery from the acclaimed University of Ibadan and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from UCSI University Malaysia. He graduated as the top student in his graduating set and was trained in the art and science of the blue ocean strategy at their South East Asia regional centre.
He is the C.E.O and Co-founder of GeroCare Solutions Ltd. and Managing Director of Barth Consulting Nigeria Ltd. 

He has been the medical director of a Bayelsa State Government Hospital and more recently Head of Medical Services for Bayelsa Health Services Scheme (a state owned health insurance scheme).
He is the author of a series of books in the Dr. Ebi Ofrey Business Advisory Series.
He has also written and produced an audio series of health information titled Demystifying Series 
Including Demystifying HIV/AIDS, Demystifying Cervical Cancer.
He was shortlisted for providing a startup providing subscription based medical care for the elderly.

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Dr. Doris-Jema Onyeador has over 6 years of experience in the eye care sector, specifically focusing on delivering accessible, affordable and quality eye care services to various classes of Nigerians, production of quality optical lenses for the clinic and other target eye clinics within its environs. Currently, Doris is the CEO of Maldor Eyecare Center & Optical Services Ltd., where she focuses on innovative eye care services, production and glazing of lenses, and a well-stocked eye wear gallery. Doris-Jema holds a

Doctor of Optometry degree from Imo State University Owerri, Nigeria and is currently running a program in clinical optometry at Cardiff University, UK. Doris is driven by her passion and commitment to deliver world class eye care and optical services to all classes of Nigerians, and as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility Doris-Jema as the CEO devotes resources and time to offer free eye care services, eyeglasses and medications to old people’s homes and the less privilege both in urban and rural communities in Nigeria.

 Upon completion of the Mandela Washington Fellowship, she plans on expanding the optical laboratory into industrial lens production to service clinics across cities in Nigeria, and venture into eye wear manufacturing.

She was shortlisted for her programme Maldor Gift of Insight; it provides quality eye care and support to patients in low-income environments.

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Dr Imodoye Abioro is an advocate for positive social change in hot pursuit of achieving SDGs 1, 2 and 3 in Sub-Saharan Africa. He has volunteered with organizations helping orphans and vulnerable children and other groups in extreme poverty for 6 years. He founded Project #LendAnArm – Oyo state’s largest blood donation awareness campaign, he’s also a computer programmer with a special interest in Machine learning especially Tensorflow.js.

Lend an Arm is a health information awareness campaign and youth-focused blood drive. When launched, the solution will provide up-to-date, expert-authored, health information to all users, written in local language. It also aims to connect voluntary blood donors to blood banks and hospitals within a community.

The project is currently working to build up an online community of voluntary blood donors who will form a stable supply chain of blood products for meeting emergency healthcare needs.

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Morenike Fajemisin is an experienced regulatory professional and a target driven marketing professional with technical expertise in family planning, Sexual health, women and children’s health and other public health programs. 

She founded Whispa application.

Whispa is a mobile app that provides young people with private, even anonymous, access to a variety of sexual and reproductive health information, products and services.

The app can make recommendations for the most suitable contraceptive method by taking into consideration medical and sexual history, while following WHO eligibility guidelines.

Whispa does not only screen users for contraceptive method eligibility, but also ensures usage by utilising mobile phones’ GPS capabilities to refer its users to selected adolescent-friendly health providers within their vicinity.

Fajemisin was shortlisted for Whispa: A mobile app that provides young people with private access to a variety of sexual and reproductive health information, products and services

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Charles Onu is an AI researcher, software engineer and social innovator; who is passionate about applying technology to solving some of the toughest global challenges today. Charles’ work has been centered around the application of machine learning and mobile technologies within healthcare. He is a Jeanne Sauvé Fellow and an Associate Fellow of the Royal Commonwealth Society.

Onu was shortlisted for Ubenwa: An android app which determines whether or not a new-born is experiencing asphyxiaby analysing a recording of their cry.

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Dr Charles Immanuel Akhimien is a medical doctor who co-founded MOBicure, a digital health company providing mobile technology solutions to some of Africa’s most challenging health problems. 

MOBicure’s latest project is the myPaddi App, one of the fastest growing apps in Africa in 2019 with over 11,000 users. myPaddi is a sexual and reproductive health app that guarantees young people anonymous access to accurate sexual and reproductive health information, as well as medical personnel.
MOBicure’s flagship product, the multi-award winning OMOMI app is providing over 40,000 women with life-saving maternal and child health information.

Despite his young age, Charles is globally recognized as a thought leader in digital health and innovation and he has garnered several international awards. 

Dr. Charles is also a grant awardee of the U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF), a Highly-commended runner-up of the 2016 Queen’s Young Leaders Award and a Yunus & Youth Fellow. 
He was also named on the Real Leaders 100 list of 2018 alongside global icons such as Nobel Laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus, Emma Watson, Jessica Alba, and Bill & Melinda Gates. 

He bagged his medical degree from the University of Benin in June 2013.

He was shortlisted formyPaddi: An app that provides young people with access to sexual and reproductive health information with complete anonymity.

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