Monday, 18 December 2017

Nigeria: An App Created to Save Babies With Birth Asphyxia

A Nigerian startup has developed a machine learning system to detect child birth asphyxia earlier and hopes to save thousands of babies’ lives every year when its technology is deployed.
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The young startup is already garnering international attention and is in the final round for the global IBM Watson AI XPRIZE competition, which has a $5 million prize.
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Currently deployed as an embedded model on an Android app, Ubenwa, which means baby’s cry, helps parents and caregivers detect asphyxia earlier, without having to wait on doctors.
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Charles Onu, Ubenwa’s founder and principal innovator, explained that the startup’s machine learning system takes an infant’s cry as input, analyses the amplitude and frequency patterns of the cry and provides instant diagnosis of birth asphyxia.
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The Ubenwa team is conducting clinical validation exercises in Nigeria at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital and in Canada at the McGill University Health Centre.
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The company is yet to figure out a definitive monetization business strategy.
“We are still finalizing a hybrid model. But in the meantime, we are planning to make it free for individuals and paid for organizations such as hospitals, clinics, governments, and others),” Onu said.

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