SARS, MERS, Avian Flu, Swine Flu, HIV, COVID-19—all of these viruses are zoonotic. They ‘spillover’ from animals to humans. The problem often lies in what we eat, and how we raise animals for eating.
Participatory One Health Disease Detection (PODD) is a pre-spillover participatory community disease detection surveillance platform. Through a mobile application farmers, livestock owners, and local community members are able to photograph and document animal health events in real-time. The application sends these photos, along with observation notes, to local veterinarians and health officials. If enough animals are sick within a certain radius, or the local officials decide to investigate an animal, a response team is dispatched to handle the case appropriately. Any potential animal outbreak is detected early, and the spread is contained before it spills over to people in the community.
PODD currently has over 600 local government officials handling cases and over 10,000 local volunteers participating in personal disease surveillance.
PODD is directly impacting 20,000 livestock owners, volunteers, and local officials, and indirectly impacting 177,000 community members in provinces where PODD is implemented.
Covid-19, a single spillover event, caused the Thai economy to contract over 5 percent, seriously damaging its $60 billion tourism industry and putting 20 million informal workers at risk. There are 7,850 local governments in Thailand. Combined, they are willing to spend an estimated $4 million annually on community-based health reporting. In 2017, local governments committed to developing digital capacity to improve community services, opening up a key market for PODD. PODD seeks to expand to neighboring markets with similar health issues and a lack of community-based disease surveillance systems, such as Cambodia and Laos.
Won ASEAN ICT Award in 2017
Featured in BBC news’ World Hacks and BBC’s “People Fixing the World” podcast
Featured in PBS Newshour piece on tracking animal health to prevent outbreaks of human disease
Business strategy expertise to pivot PODD's model from a localized community project to a country/region-agnostic product/business
Partnerships with NGOs and governments to connect to new markets
Mentorship for funding and business development as PODD scales its model and products to multiple geographies and markets