Frugal Innovation in Medicine

Frugal Innovation in Medicine

What is Frugal innovation?

Frugal innovation provides effective functional solutions to common problems encountered by “the many”, with a minimal use of resources. In healthcare, these innovations frequently arise when usual solutions are too expensive or not available, and are especially helpful in and for developing countries.

Four types of frugal innovations can be identified:

Lean tools and techniques refer to the simplification and adaptation of existing technologies to drastically reduce costs and provide health innovations to everyone.

Opportunistic solutions refer to the clever use of modern, cheap, and available-for-everyone technologies to tackle “old problems”.

Contextualized adaptations refer to the diversion of existing techniques, materials or tools for completely different purposes.

Bottom-up innovations refer to original, simple – and even simplistic- ideas to obtain results unattainable before.

The issue is that many frugal innovations remain local and rarely spread to others who might face similar challenges.

To know more about frugal innovations in medicine, don't hesitate to read our article available here : Frugal innovation in medicine for low resource settings

In this website, we invite people to share their ideas and realizations of frugal innovations so that they can be disseminated, evaluated and reused by everyone.


"Any problem can be solved with a little ingenuity"
Mc Gyver

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