Opportunity AreaHow might we improve data systems for healthcare delivery?
The proposed title of your ideaPharmacomia - A health economics utility driven at determining the most effective drug intervention model for patients.
Please describe your idea.Pharmacomia is a tool to analyze the cost-effectiveness of pharmaceutical interventions and guide the clinical decision making of patients.
What problem does your idea solve in the market?Healthcare is expensive. This leaves a large financial burden on a majority of citizens and the Ugandan national health ministry has done little to lessen this, spending far below international standards on its citizens. More so, the global pharmaceutical industry is extremely competitive & has flooded the market with expensive drugs in a bid to recoup R&D and return profits. Unfortunately, the expense of a drug does not directly relate to its actual therapeutic benefit. Pharmacomia will enable patients and practitioners to identify the most effective drug interventions at minimal cost.
Briefly explain how you identified the need or opportunityI have suffered the loss of a cancer patient in my life and like many people, was astounded at the cost of the required medication. Despite the efforts in acquiring the best medication available, we faltered by perceiving the more expensive drugs as the most beneficial. However, 2 years into Pharmacy school, I don't find this to be true. It is no secret that humans are inherently afraid of death and spend generously for even the slightest second spent longer with our loved ones. My dream is to contribute to a more rational decision-making among patients, caretakers and medical practitioner and offer value-oriented drug interventions to the benefit of all.
Who are the beneficiaries of your solution and how will they benefit?The beneficiaries of Pharmacomia will be anyone who has and will ever need to purchase drugs and finds a range of drugs with apparently similar action but varying prices. Patients, caretakers and medical practitioners stand to all benefit. We also believe that a value-oriented health care system will by and large improve productivity and economical state of the country.
Why are you convinced your solution will solve the problem?Patients will spend less time debating on what medication to purchase and when they do, they will be able to spend significantly less and yet yield maximum benefit. Rather than replace the role of doctors, Pharmacomia will be an assistive tool that will improve the quality and affordability of health care provided by doctors.
What other initiatives like yours exist out there? How will you differentiate your solution?We identified a similar initiative developed by Digital Health Outcomes. However, it is more generalized and includes all kinds of medical interventions, clinical & pharmaceutical alike. This tool cannot be used as a consumer health product and is best utilized by professionals such as economists, epidemiologists, public health specialists etc. Our intention is to develop a tool that can be used by anyone trying to make a decision about the drugs to buy.
What have you done up-to date to test your idea with potential users? What learnings do you have to share?My friends and I have embarked on a less technological approach to advise people on the best drugs to buy. Normally, pharmacy proprietors and doctors are driven by profits and mislead patients into buying the most expensive drugs. As we interned at various places, we were privileged to work with people who shared the same interest in seeing patients acquire valuable health care. We advised patients appropriately even when they could afford more expensive drugs. Although we faced some resistance, I am proud to note that we contributed real value to patients in their decision to seek treatment. We are determined to scale up through developing an app so as to reach out and benefit more people. Currently. an algorithm has been developed to this end. We have embarked on integrating this into web-based and (thereafter) mobile-based applications that are market ready.
How will you financially sustain your business?Most revenue will be from app downloads and subscriptions on certain premium services. Furthermore, with accumulation of sufficient data and experience we will offer consultancy to various stakeholders (such as NGO's, health ministry, pharmaceutical companies etc ) at a fee.
Please share a link to a 3 minute online video that best describes your idea and teamN/A
Please tell us about each founder and their roles on the team. How do you know your founders and how long have you worked together?Calvin Ainebyona, Founder. He is a young entrepreneur and Pharmacy student at Mbarara University of Science and Technology.
Please tell us about other team members that are not cofounders.
Which members of your team will attend the program full-time?Calvin Ainebyona - Co-Founder Kamoga Cena Gonzaga - Co-Founder