Maternal & Newborn Health challenge from MIT Solve
How can every woman, new mother, and newborn access the care they need to survive and thrive?
Over $1.5 million in prize funding is available for Solve’s 2020 Global Challenges, including Maternal & Newborn Health.
Deadline to Submit a Solution on
Every 11 seconds, a woman or newborn under one month old dies of complications related to pregnancy or childbirth, mostly from preventable or treatable causes. While the majority of these deaths occur in low-income countries, marginalized communities everywhere are disproportionately affected: in the United States, for example, a black woman is 3.3 times more likely to die from a complication in pregnancy or childbirth than a white woman. And as the COVID-19 pandemic sweeps the globe, overwhelming healthcare systems, access to essential health services becomes even more difficult for women and newborns—particularly those who are vulnerable.
Even after childbirth, obstacles to physical and mental well-being abound, from premature birth complications for babies to postpartum complications for women. Notably, the first month of a child’s life, the newborn period, is the most critical for survival and brain development.
The MIT Solve community is looking for technology-based solutions that promote the health and well-being of women, new mothers, and newborns everywhere. To that end, Solve seeks solutions that:
Expand access to high-quality, affordable maternal and newborn care for women, new mothers, and newborns, including by expanding the health workforce, improving service delivery and diagnostics, and lowering barriers to seeking care, including stigma;
Decrease the risk of disease among mothers and newborns, including by increasing vaccination rates and reducing infectious disease transmission from mother to baby;
Improve gynecological health for all women; and
Support the mental and emotional health of women throughout pregnancy and after childbirth, through psychological and medical care, as well as community support.
All solutions selected for Solve’s five current Global Challenges will receive a $10,000 grant funded by Solve. Solver teams will be selected by a panel of cross-sector judges at Solve Challenge Finals during UN General Assembly week in New York City on September 20, 2020.
In addition, to Solve funding, the following prizes are available to Solver teams selected for the Maternal & Newborn Health Challenge. To be considered for a prize, complete the prize-specific question within the application. You do not need to meet these requirements to apply to the Maternal & Newborn Health Challenge:
The Andan Prize for Innovation in Refugee Inclusion
The Andan Prize for Innovation in Refugee Inclusion is open to solutions that advance the economic, financial, and political inclusion of refugees. The prize is funded by Andan Foundation, a Swiss non-profit foundation dedicated to supporting solutions that promote refugee resilience, self-reliance, and integration. Up to $100,000 will be granted to up to four eligible Solver teams from across any of Solve’s current Global Challenges.
Innovation for Women Prize
Solutions that use innovative technology to improve the quality of life for women and girls are eligible for the Innovation for Women Prize. This prize is funded by the Vodafone Americas Foundation, which supports technology-focused projects that advance the needs of women and girls, and that promotes a world where women’s voices can be celebrated. Up to $75,000 will be granted across up to three Solver teams from any of Solve’s current Global Challenges.
Health Workforce Innovation Prize
The Health Workforce Innovation Prize is open to solutions that expand and support the health workforce for newborns, pregnant women, and new mothers in low-income countries, where newborn mortality rates are 10 times those in higher-income countries. Solutions that expand access to training for health workers, improve workers’ assessment and referral capabilities, and/or introduce new tools or methods for treatment are preferred. This prize is made possible by the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Court’s global health initiative, which is committed to providing treatment and preventative care in communities that lack access to quality health services. One prize recipient will be granted $50,000 after being selected as a Solver for the Maternal & Newborn Health Challenge.
The AI for Humanity Prize
The AI for Humanity Prize is open to solutions that are already using strong data science, artificial intelligence, or machine learning to benefit humanity, and to solutions that are not yet using these technologies but plan to do so to amplify their impact in the future. This prize is made possible by The Patrick J. McGovern Foundation, which is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals and our global community through neuroscience research and information technology. Up to $200,000 will be granted across several Solver teams from any of Solve’s current Global Challenges.
Given IFIA‘s membership in MIT Solve, this is a great opportunity for members to take part in this challenge