Innovation Sighting: Task Unification Saves Lives & Money
Philips North America announced Fosmo Med, developer of the Maji Intravenous (IV) saline bag, as the grand prize winner of the first-ever Philips Innovation Fellows competition, revealing the technology as the next big, meaningful innovation in health and well-being. The new IV solution technology has the potential to save millions of lives worldwide from dehydration-related diseases, such as cholera. Maji is a revolutionary field hydration system for IV use that is shipped without water. Once on site, forward osmosis technology converts local water — even if it’s not clean — to a sterile solution without requiring any electrical power. An estimated 16 Maji bags can be shipped for the same cost as one traditional IV saline bag, saving up to $500 for every 14 units shipped. Maji is an example of the Task Unification Technique, one of five in the SIT innovation method. Task Unification works by assigning an additional task to an existing resource. In this example, the Maji bag has the additional job of filtering water. “We’re very excited to be named the winner of the Philips Innovation Fellows Competition,” said Ben Park, chief executive officer and founder of Fosmo Med. “Maji will enable many more IV bags to be shipped for the same cost, stored safely and transported to remote sites. The potential life savings could be in the millions annually.” “We are thrilled to name Fosmo Med as the grand prize winner and to support them as they work to take Maji to the market,” said Greg Sebasky, chairman of Philips North America. “As a company committed to meaningful innovation, it is gratifying to find a social enterprise that has the potential to revolutionize the medical device industry with a simple, forward-thinking solution.” Philips practices what it preaches. It is featured in Inside the Box: A Proven System of Creativity for Breakthrough Results for its use of the Subtraction Technique in creating the Slimline DVD player. “Maji shows Fosmo Med’s commitment to providing affordable healthcare and well-being above all else,” added Sebasky. Fosmo Med was selected from among hundreds of entries to the Innovation Fellows Competition. The company secured funding from the public through the crowd funding portion of the competition on Indiegogo, global web-based crowd funding site, and, once named a finalist, the Maji IV saline bag was named the “most meaningful” innovation by Philips employees. In addition to $60,000 in prize money, Fosmo Med will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Philips’ USA headquarters to meet with Philips leadership for mentor and whiteboard sessions to support development of the Maji IV.
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