In March, Butterfly Network announced a $5 million grant to improve maternal and fetal health in Sub-Saharan Africa. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation provided the grant. The funds geared toward providing 1,000 healthcare workers in the area with the Butterfly iQ+ handheld, whole-body point-of-care ultrasound probe.
The company aims to advance maternal and fetal health in the region. Butterfly Network announced the deployment in a ceremony at Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya.
“The vast majority of the world’s population lacks access to medical imaging equipment and training, a gap that limits what’s possible when it comes to assessing the health and risk of a patient and a community at large. With Butterfly, we are changing that,” said Darius Shahida, chief strategy officer and chief business development officer, Butterfly Network. “Our work here in Kenya represents the beginning of what’s possible in terms of providing practitioners with the tools, training, and confidence to transform care with ultrasound information. Obstetricians in high-income countries use ultrasound every day and so we’re honored to empower midwives across Africa with the same ability – one we know will meaningfully enhance care for pregnant women and their unborn infants.”
Organizations come together to support the initiative
Kenyatta University partnered with Global Ultrasound Institute and Butterfly Network in the initiative. Acting vice-chancellor Waceke Wanjohi said practitioners equipped with Butterfly devices and training can help to bring improved care to mothers and their children in the community.
As part of the launch, Butterfly Network convened 50 practitioners, each of whom received a device and obstetric ultrasound training. Through the program, 500 total practitioners will receive training by the end of the year. This aims to bring ultrasound capabilities to more than 50 facilities in rural, underserved communities.
Jamf also contributed to the program. The company’s software for mobile device management gives each practitioner a rapid login process and express scan mode while ensuring patient privacy is intact and data is secure.
“Expanding access to medical imaging technology in Kenya is critical to maternal and fetal health. Equally important to expanded access is the personalized training that hundreds of healthcare providers received through this deployment,” said Dr. Kevin Bergman, co-founder and CEO of Global Ultrasound Institute. “Equipped with Butterfly ultrasound technology, hundreds of healthcare providers throughout Kenya will be able to use handheld ultrasound to treat and care for hundreds of thousands of pregnant patients because of the training they received from the Global Ultrasound Institute at Kenyatta University.”