Brian Gitta from Uganda won the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Africa Prize for his innovative product Matibabu. He would receive USD 33 k as prize money for his feat. In Swahili, Matibabu means treatment, which falls in line with the 25-year-old’s vision for the product. In a conversation with WeeTracker, Brian said, “there is a gulf between communities and access to healthcare facilities in Uganda, and we are planning to bridge it with innovation.”
On his accomplishment, Brian says, “we are honored to have won the prize, this will open a lot of opportunities for us to drive our product from beta phase to MVP.”
Matibabu allows users to detect malaria in their bodies, without any invasive method. The disease is investigated on several other parameters, which do not need the blood sample. It is a device which needs to be clipped on to the finger and transfers the result to the attached device like a phone. On creating the product, Brian explains that in the past his blood sample could not be detected for malaria thrice. There was a need to have an alternative, which was more reliable. The product, which is still in its beta -phase, will be tested clinically for observations and improvements. Currently, the product runs with a periphery device, like a phone or a laptop.
Brian Gitta (centre) with his team
Brian is the CEO of thinkIT, which was incorporated four years back when he was barely 21. He and his team of 5 members have since been consulting on technology products. Along with Matibabu, there are other products at incubation level with the startup, mostly directed at solving healthcare challenges. As a computer science graduate, Brian feels that the technology can be leveraged to help communities get access to affordable and convenient diagnosis.
The team thinks that the startup ecosystem in Uganda is gradually picking up, but a lot is desired regarding infrastructure and investments.
Feature Image: Brian Gatti (L) & Shafik Sekitto (R)
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