The NCL Cholera Innovation Hackathon

November 19, 2010/0/0
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Y’know cholera has been getting a lot of press lately. And for good reason. There are fewer illnesses that can spread as rapidly and decimate entire populations like cholera can. The real tragedy lies in the fact that the treatment is really tied to early and adequate rehydration.

You are literally trying to keep up with the fluid losses from the intractable diarrhea that the disease brings on. NPR’s coverage of the cholera outbreak can be found here, and the wiki article is really quite excellent too.

Sometimes just learning about diseases and how to manage them isn’t enough. Sometimes folks need to come together and brainstorm new ideas, however trivial they may be. We’d like to create a forum for that here at NCL. Over the next two weeks, if you have an idea that might improve some aspect of managing a cholera outbreak, (containment, treatment delivery, public health strategy, fundraising, etc) we’d like to hear it. Post it, with pics if needed, onto the NCL FB group wall and get your friends to vote on it with likes.  The best idea, upon review by our panel of physicians, taking into account like popularity, will get a cheque for $250. We’ll also match $250 and send it to the MSF relief effort, along with your idea to see if it might be implemented, giving you full credit. We’ll also submit your idea to Kickstarter and try our darndest to get it funded in total.

Look for our thoughts on how one might deliver ORS (oral rehydration solution) quickly and effectively in an upcoming post.  We won’t be competing for the money, but we’ll submit our idea just to get your juices flowing.  Can you help make a difference? In the grand scheme of things, $500 isn’t all that much, but in the wake of such suffering, perhaps one of you or your colleagues might come up with an idea that might save lives. Help us get the word out by sharing this shortened URL: – thanks so much and good hunting!