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October 2014

October Grantee of the Month: FIA Global Focuses on Alternative Tech To Connect the Last Mile to Banking Services

Blythe Nicole Kladney's picture

(c) World Bank GroupAfsar Ali and the five members of his family live in a cramped two bedroom apartment in Patna, the largest city in India’s poorest region of Bihar. Each day, he drives his taxi for hours on end, all to make a meager 200 Rupees. After a long shift of driving around the tightly packed city, he comes home and places whatever savings he has, underneath his mattress for safe keeping. This is his savings account.
Afsar is not alone in keeping what money he can in mattresses, cupboards, or even, depending on the community, in a lock box shared by the entire village. For approximately 2.5 billion people in the world, access to basic financial services like savings and checking accounts are a luxury beyond their reach. Many banks tend to turn clients such as Afsar away because they are considered risky lenders or what little they can put into savings, does not come close to the deposit base banks require. 

TEDxWBG: Scaling Up Services, Together We Can Eliminate TB

Dr. Shelly Batra's picture

This bag belongs to Rinki. Rinki doesn’t need it anymore. She was thrown out school when she got tuberculosis. So this is tuberculosis or TB, as it’s commonly known. Though fully curable disease, it has now become a global pandemic. There are nine million new cases in the world annually. 1.3 million deaths. Ten million children have been orphaned because of it. Today itself, 5,000 people will die of TB. And TB is curable.

Let’s talk about technology. eCompliance is a low cost solution to tracking the progress of TB treatment. A tablet with a fingerprint reader attached, a patient gives their fingerprint on each visit to the treatment center. If the fingerprint is messed, an immediate alert goes to the health worker, who visits the patient’s house to give the medicine and takes the fingerprint as proof of visit. This ensures that every dose is taken and prevents drug resistant TB. The World Bank Group’s India Development Marketplace played a crucial role in scaling our eCompliance system and upgrading it to a zero text application. The zero text application is being used by illiterate health workers across the world with ease and accuracy.