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Incentivizing blood donation

A social platform that encourages you to save lives through the gift of blood.

Photo of Mohamed Shuraih
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My country, the Maldives has the highest prevalence of Thalassaemia in the world. Almost one in five Maldivians are thalassaemia carriers.

One out of every 120 newborns is born with Thalassaemia. 85% of these children will not survive till the age of five unless they receive regular blood transfusions.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thalassemia#Epidemiology


The Maldives has a population of roughly 400,000. The currently available pool of donors is numerically low, and yet there is a statistically higher demand for blood donors.

In addition to having to meet this demand, the local blood banks are under constant stress from blood donation needs - medical surgeries, trauma care and other emergencies.

However, the Maldives has an extraordinarily high penetration of cell-phone and data connectivity (>190%) throughout all regions of the country, and most people own modern smartphones.

The Maldives also has a young population with strong online social presence.

My idea is to seize this opportunity, and provide an M-Health app to incentivize the act of blood donation.


Basic Features


  • The app would help donors maintain blood donation history, and easily view their donation schedule    
  • Push notifications and SMS alerts for donor opportunities or emergency situations
  • Find nearby donation centres
  • Set goals and share updates with friends on social media


Redeemable points & social badges

The point system


The app further incentivizes regular donation by including motivational factors such as badges that can be unlocked.

Sponsored rewards from strategic partners (such as corporate CSR programmes) could encourage further participation. These rewards could potentially range from a month of free Netflix subscription, retail store gift cards, additional phone credit or airline miles.

The application would maintain a secure, up-to-date donor database. The data would be made accessible to medical institutions and local blood banks, with open interfaces to integrate with existing healthcare software systems.



2. How would you describe the stage of development of your idea?

  • Conceptual Development

4. How will your idea make an impact and in what way?

The Maldives has an extraordinarily high penetration of cell-phone and data connectivity (>190%) throughout all regions of the country, and most people own modern smartphones.

Reference: http://www.cam.gov.mv/Statistics.htm

The Maldives also has a young population with strong online social presence.

5. Tell us about the scalability of your idea to other communities.

The app is conceived as an open source project with permissive licensing schemes. This would allow developers across the globe to customize and scale the platform to their unique local profile, languages and geographies.

6. How will winning the Euro 20,000 seed funding move your idea forward?

The seed funds would cover initial development costs, and cost of operations for 12 months.

In the initial phase, I want to maximize sign-ups of potential donors by investing in marketing through broadcast and social media - which, in the Maldives, would would broadly cover the target demographics. The investment would help achieve a critical mass of users in a span of 12 months.

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Photo of Judy
Team

I'm wondering what the barriers to blood donations are currently (e.g. stigma associated with blood donation, lack of awareness or education about blood donations, access to medical facilities etc.) and whether you've done research in this area to understand how you may address these issues. In Australia, stringent eligibility criteria deems many people ineligible to donate. There are also many campaigns to raise awareness and encourage donations but there always seems to be a shortage. I think this would need to be address before the APP would even be applicable.

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