The First Mile Innovation Challenge

CAMTech and GE Sustainable Healthcare Solutions launched The First Mile Innovation Challenge to crowdsource innovative technologies/solutions that directly address clinical or community hardships in global primary care. The initiative crowd sourced ideas that would impact communities in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) with a focus on maternal and child health, cardiac health and safe surgery. Sisu Global Health, a medical device company developing health technologies that address critical needs in emerging markets, won the $25k award for their low-cost auto-transfusion device called Hemafuse.


The handheld, mechanical tool helps to recover patient blood loss during surgery and other emergency situations, as well as replaces the need for donor blood. Hemafuse works like a syringe, pulling a patient’s blood through a filter and transferring it back to a blood bag to be recycled – addressing the critical need of blood shortage in LMICs.


The Sisu Global Health team

In addition to funding, the team will receive resources to support their innovation through the CAMTech Innovation Platform and introductions to GE’s new five.eight Accelerator. CAMTech and GE announced the awards as a follow-up opportunity to the First Mile Discovery Challenge, which identified the most pressing, unmet clinical needs in primary healthcare and awarded ten $1,000 prizes to the best-defined challenges.

Amongst the 80+ applications from 16 different countries, the top proposals included:

  • CARIA (Cardiac Risk Assessment System): a portable screening tool that measures a person’s height, weight, waist and hip circumference, blood pressure, blood sugar and SpO2 – within 8 minutes per subject (Lattice Innovations, India)
  • Making Minimal Invasive Surgery Available and Affordable: – a tool that makes laparoscopic and renal surgeries possible in rural areas using spinal anesthesia (Seesha and Karunya University, India)
  • PremieBreathe: a mobile device that delivers humidified, warmed, and oxygenated air to provide life-saving breathing support for newborns (Yale University, USA)

Check out the video to to learn more about the Challenge, and click here to read the press release.