Voxiva's Social Responsibility Initiatives

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Case Details:

Case Code : BECG048
Case Length : 13 Pages
Period : 2001 - 2005
Pub. Date : 2005
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Voxiva
Industry : Information Technology, Healthcare
Countries : Peru

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Introduction Contd...

I encourage people to look at the developing world to solve big problems, where one can have a much greater impact." 6 Voxiva's innovative health solutions were used in several countries across the world to detect disease outbreaks, monitor patients, and track critical supplies for agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the US Department of Defense (DoD), the US Agency for International Development, the World Bank, Peru's Ministry of Health, Iraq's Ministry of Health, and the Washington DC, San Diego, and California Departments of Public Health...

Background Note

Headquartered in Washington DC, Voxiva was founded in March 2001. Its aim was to create a technology platform that could be used by anyone, regardless of the communication devices available. The idea to establish a firm that would provide solutions for public health occurred to Meyer when he was working with the Markle Foundation.7

Meyer's work involved the use of technology in humanitarian emergencies and promoting the spread of Internet-based technologies in the developing world. He felt that too much importance was being given to computers and the Internet to provide tech-based health solutions in spite of their high maintenance costs.

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According to Meyer, "People were so focused on the Internet that they forgot how many phones there are in the world."8 Voxiva's initial investors included Markle Foundation and Ben & Jerry Ice Cream, which contributed US $500,000 and $250,000 respectively.

Initially, Voxiva's efforts were directed primarily toward offering health care solutions but it gradually began to provide other services such as public safety solutions and e-government solutions. Voxiva's public health applications could be accessed from any phone as well as through the Internet. It allowed hospital employees to use any phone (mobile or landline) or any computer connected to the Internet to report information on any disease outbreaks and important supply stocks. Health officials received the information immediately and could respond to the problem by providing their feedback through Voxiva's applications. The company's public health applications included Disease Surveillance, Critical Supply Monitoring, Immunization Monitoring, School Health Surveillance, and Public Health Preparedness...

Excerpts >>

6] Lee Eun J, Report from ETC: The Young and the Innovative, www.technologyreview.com, October 01, 2003.

7] Founded in 1927, New York based Markle Foundation uses ICTs to address critical public needs especially in the areas on health and security.

8] Jennifer Reingold, Harnessing the Net, One Phone at a Time, Fast Company, Issue 75, October 2003.


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