Motorcycle ambulances to help reduce maternal mortality in rural Africa
In autumn 2020, Semcon partnered in a development project with Eezer Initiativet, which develops and implements unique motorcycle ambulances to reduce maternal mortality in East and Central Africa. The goal is to make it easier for pregnant women and new mothers to get to hospitals. The project, which is now moving into the next phase, is part of Semcon’s CSR programme.
In the African countryside, the nearest hospital can be a long way away, and getting there often means travelling through rough terrain. By using ambulance wagons towed behind motorcycles, more women can get access to care and maternal mortality can be reduced. Right now, 25 ambulance wagons are being tested in Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi, Somalia, Chad and Burkina Faso. The long-term goal is to have 3,000 wagons in place around Africa by 2030.
It’s been amazing to work for such a good cause. We’ve been working across office boundaries at Semcon and it’s been a really rewarding project.
– Kristina Svahnström, Human Factors Specialist at Semcon
Semcon helped to develop the concept using a design to protect the patient from rain and road dust, a towing solution to prevent the wagon from overturning, and a new wagon for a mobile clinic that can be driven out to villages and markets.
"It’s been extremely gratifying to work with Semcon and develop a great and sustainable product. We are committed to really trying to understand the users and to creating a design that is easy to use, with the longest service life possible." says Lars Klingsbo, coordinator at Eezer.
For the next phase of the project, Eezer is planning – if the pandemic situation allows – more user tests, follow-up and development of the ambulance wagons throughout Africa in 2021, including in cooperation with Semcon.