Award winning South African medical referral app, Vula Mobile, has been selected to join 10 other digital health startups from across Africa to pitch their solutions at the upcoming Sanofi Afric@Tech initiative taking place at the Viva Technology (VivaTech) conference later this week.
During VivaTech, which is taking place from the 24th to 26th of May in Paris, France, the Afric@Tech finalists will pitch their eHealth innovations to a panel of judges. The selected projects will be awarded with financial support, coaching and mentoring from Sanofi, with the possibility of collaborating with one of the company’s departments in Africa down the line.
Sanofi’s Afric@Tech initiative, which was launched in February, set out three challenges that needed to be solved to revolutionise healthcare practices in Africa. The first challenge is focused on the early diagnosis of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) with new technology; the second challenge is the use of telemedicine with integrated mobile payment options to improve healthcare access in Africa; and the third challenge aims to improve the education of healthcare professionals in chronic disease management in Africa.
Vula Mobile was selected out of a pool of over 180 startups based on their concrete proof of positive results in at least one African country; the maturity of the project; the relevance of the solution; the potential of the market and of the business model; skills, expertise and experience of the team; and the scientific feasibility.
In an interview with Disrupt Africa, Founder of Vula Mobile, Dr William Mapham, noted that they are delighted with by being given the opportunity to be part of the Africa@Tech challenge. “We look forward to learning and sharing from others at the event and we hope to connect with people from governments, organisations and businesses to have an even greater impact in our country,” said Dr Mapham.
Another South African eHealth venture also made it through, Appenberg Digital Publishing . The Cape Town-based startup aims to upscale education and foster and provide remote access to healthcare resources through digital technology. According to Ventureburn, the startup is already collaborating with a number of universities and key stakeholder in the Western Cape to create mobiles apps and eLearning platforms.
The other startup finalists are mHealth app Bisa from Ghana; medtech platform Gifted Mom from Cameroon; digital medical service provider Informed Healthcare from Egypt; KEA Medicals from Benin who have developed a QR-code-embedded medical identification card platform; mobile clinic provider MedTrucks from Morocco; eLearning platform Otrac from Nigeria; Sagitarix from Kenya who have developed a pharmaceutical mHealth information exchange platform; and Yapili, a Pan-African peer-to-peer medical advice platform.