We are very pleased to have a strong relationship with the people within the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) who deal with ORS and Zinc. Since I met the teams in Uganda and India, CHAI have signed a global agreement with us to enable all relevant staff to access our trial findings through our open access initiative.
The Ugandan team are of particular relevance to us because that is where CHAI’s Global Head of Innovation in ORS + Zinc sits. CHAI are just about to start testing different concepts around ORS and Zinc, with mothers in India, Nigeria and Uganda; we were very pleased to be approached to include the Kit Yamoyo Flexi-pack as one of the concepts to be tested. For this, the researchers needed sample kits to be despatched today. The problem was that our sealing machine was stuck in customs. After days of no progress, I decided I had to go to the airport myself, yesterday, to try and establish what the problem was. I managed to loosen the machinery of bureaucracy, by a 2-hour round-trip into Lusaka and back to the airport. Seven hours later, and in the nick of time, we had our sealing machine. Here it is in action.
We had everything else ready to go to assemble our first Flexi-packs. At lunchtime today, just 24 hours before we leave Zambia for a short break, DHL collected them. You can track their progress towards their destinations here: India; Nigeria; Uganda. I’d particularly like to acknowledge the efforts of Amcor who made the gusseted bags by hand (thank you Peter), those of PI Global (thank you Eric and Dave) for sourcing and commissioning the Hulme Martin sealing machine before shipping it to Zambia and those of Pharmanova for supplying all the components on time and to spec (thanks Rakesh).
To help convey the concept behind the Flexi-pack we put this video together to show how the kit is used and in particular how the bag is used to measure the water needed to make the ORS correctly. Bear in mind that our trial found that less than 60% of mothers get the mixing right when given a 1 litre ORS sachet and this is significant if you take the view that you haven’t delivered a medicine until the patient has taken it correctly.
We really look forward to hearing about the reaction of mothers to the Flexi-pack.
As soon as the CHAI Flexi-packs were on their way, Alison from IDinsight called in to collect 60 Flexi-packs for the ‘Willingness to Pay’ study they started for us in Ndola yesterday.
Onwards and upwards!
The data contained in this blog post: Findings in this blog post are unpublished and based on initial analysis of data from the ColaLife Operational Trial in Zambia (COTZ). Final calculations may vary and will be published in peer reviewed literature in due course. In the interim, the following citation may be used: Ramchandani, R. et al. (2014). ColaLife Operational Trial Zambia (COTZ) Evaluation. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore. Related correspondence should be sent to Rohit Ramchandani (email@example.com) and copied to Simon Berry (firstname.lastname@example.org).