Health Hackathon on Risk Communication Nigeria Edition Day 2
Tuesday was a day of incredible speakers, idea development and focus. The morning was packed with talks from experts from organisations such as Public Health England, the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, eHealth and others. We heard all about the wonders of one of the largest health information databases in Nigeria and what to do with it and we heard a motivational speech about how to win a hackathon.
To kick off the morning we Olasula Aruna from Public Health England give a talk on health crisis preparedness and crisis prevention. Her expert knowledge gave the participants real life context on the challenges and pitfalls of risk communication. Next was Dr Lawal Bakare who gave a speech on a serious subject that was so entertaining the audience were laughing throughout most of the 15 minute slot.
We then heard from Dr Abiodun Egwuenu, who is from the prevention and programs coordination at the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control. Dr Egwuenu developed prevention messages for meningitis, measles, lassa, cholera and AMR targeted at reducing transmission. She successfully oversaw the pre-testing of national social behaviour change communication materials for monkeypox during the 2017 outbreak in Nigeria and Dr Egwuenu also laid the groundwork for developing a national multi-hazard risk communication plan. Because of her incredible level of experience her talk was very informative. She brought the dangers of misinformation during times of crisis to life by reminding us of some of the rumours surrounding Ebola prevention including salt water baths for Ebola at 5am.
Dr Bakare is the CEO of EpidAlert, a tech non-profit who are applying their expertise learned during the response to the ebola crisis to global health security. Dr Bakare amused crowd by making light of the everyday pitfalls of working in business and healthcare throughout West Africa.
We were lucky enough to have Dami Sonoiki and from eHealth Africa join us with a fascinating presentation about their data set, which is one of the largest in Nigeria regarding health. Teams will be able to access that data for their projects going forwards.
Competitors were glad to hear the words of Michael John from Ventures Park, who had a lot to say on the best tips and tricks to win a hackathon. (Very useful!) And we also heard from Andrew Abu from Young Innovators of Nigeria who spoke about health risk communication technologies and the art of innovation.
The afternoon was a time for sharpening the focus of the ideas that were thrown around after lunch yesterday. The challenges that each team have decided to focus on are all relevant to pandemic preparation. From dangerous misinformation busting to community loudspeakers in local languages and high tech solutions, the range of ideas is broad.
Here are our 10 competitor teams and the challenging areas they have decided to tackle:
- Star Team – False information
- Health Emergency Alert – Vast coverage of health risk communication
- TECH-E – Non network areas
- MATZAPP – Environmental challenges and security
- Creative Minds – Community coordination
- Wakanda – Lack of information
- Risk Alert – Poor communiction and mobilization in high risk communities
- E-Info Team – tackling the lack of sensitization to modern health knowledge in rural communities
- Alexa for Health – Fake news
- Geo-Spatial ERC for Emergencies and Epidemics (GERCEE) – Community engagement to low mobile and internet penetration areas.
Day 2 was a great success… Shortly to follow will be the updates on day 3, the serious planning day. Thanks to everyone involved!