M a r k e t N e w s

Penn State Startup Kijenzi Supplies Kenyan Communities With 3d Printed Medical Supplies

Posted on : Wednesday , 27th March 2019

A humanitarian start-up called Kijenzi from Pennsylvania State University’s College of Engineering, is aiding remote healthcare facilities in Kenya with 3D printed medical supplies. Initially the vision of Kijenzi was to utilize portable, custom 3D printers to speedily produce health equipment such as braces, clamps and vacuum pumps at low costs. 

 
As this began to progress in the Kenyan community, the team concluded that access to the CAD design files needed to print the equipment was more limited than the hardware. Eventually, they shifted to developing a cloud-based system, enabling access to 3D printable files for hospitals and medical professionals. 
 
The director of the Penn State Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship program and Mr. Gershenson, Kijenzi’s co-founder, elaborated that their customers are health care facilities that don’t have access to supply chains they need and about 40% don’t have the equipment needed to treat their patients. They would like to bring to them the ability to locally manufacture what they need, when they need it. This is will become a game changer for access to treatment.
 
Co-founders of the Kijenzi venture with help from various entrepreneurial support programs at Penn State This brings an opportunity to students and faculty to create technology-based solutions that will positively affect those in lower income communities using sustainable business models. 
 
Kijenzi was developed through its participation in the Ben Franklin Technology Center’s TechCelerator program. Gershenson also mentioned that the TechCelerator gave them the time and feedback they  needed to craft the story of Kijenzi in such a way that everyone could understand what we are doing.”
 
Savonen identified the need for new lab equipment while teaching in Africa. This further paved way for  the venture to rural areas of Kenya. 3D printing was recognized as an appropriate solution to manufacture hard-to-get items such as anatomical models, replacement parts, and occupational therapy devices – which contribute to the well-being of others.
 
In some cases, supply chains can be limited in its reach as a result of broken and obsolete machinery, as well as logistical difficulties. These limitations have been addressed with Kijenzi’s cloud-based system which holds approximately 400 parts in its inventory.
 
And the 3D printed equipment has been tested and used within collaborative institutes as well as medical facilities. Kijenzi is all set to launch an initial program in Kenya this May.
 

Source : www.newzmart.com
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