The coronavirus pandemic is a pivotal crisis of our times, spreading rapidly across the world and taking a significant toll on human lives. It has led to several parts of the world going into quarantine to slow the spread and flatten the curve so that we give our healthcare systems time to prepare without overwhelming them. A big thank you to all doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals on the front lines for their service. 🙏
We are now in a battle against coronavirus and must use this time effectively to save as many lives as possible. Experts have already shared a roadmap of measures for us to combat Covid-19 across several phases in the articles cited below. Some countries are further along in their battle against Covid-19 and others are just getting started. These measures are relevant to countries around the world to combat the crisis.
We believe that startups have an important role to play in innovating to help achieve these measures. Our team at BonBillo, a Boston-based social impact accelerator, has created an open-source map in Miro of measures needed to combat the coronavirus crisis and posed several specific ‘How might we’ questions for entrepreneurs to consider.
The map consists of the 4 phases outlined in ‘National coronavirus response: A road map to reopening - American Enterprise Institute, by Scott Gotlieb, Mark McClellan, Lauren Silvis, Caitlin Rivers and Crystal Watson’.
1. Phase I - Slow the spread of the virus:
Quarantines or significant social distancing measures need to be in place until transmission has measurably slowed down and health infrastructure can be scaled up to safely manage the outbreak.
2. Phase II - State-by-State reopening:
Individual states or cities can move to Phase II when they are able to safely diagnose, treat, and isolate COVID-19 cases and their contacts. During this phase, schools and businesses can reopen, and much of normal life can begin to resume in a phased approach. Older adults and those with underlying conditions will need to continue social distancing measures.
3. Phase III - Establish protection and then lift all restrictions:
Physical distancing restrictions and other Phase II measures can be lifted when safe and effective tools for mitigating the risk of COVID-19 are available, including broad surveillance, therapeutics, or a safe and effective vaccine.
4. Phase IV - Rebuild our readiness for the next pandemic:
Increase preparedness for the next pandemic with investment into research and development initiatives, expansion of health care infrastructure and workforce, and clear governance structures.
For each phase, we listed the recommended measures along with additional measures to combat second-order effects of the crisis. Applying the ‘Sprint’ framework by Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky and Braden Kowitz, we have identified ‘How Might We’ (HMW) questions for each phase and cited examples of startups contributing to these HMWs.
For instance, a smart thermometer real-time fever map by Kinsa may help forecast the spread of Covid-19. Biobot, a wastewater analytics company is working to create a map of sewage systems that have poop testing positive for Covid-19 to enable policymakers and healthcare systems to make smarter decisions. An MIT team is working on an open low-cost ventilator and another on a contact tracing app to alert individuals who may have had contact with someone that tested positive. There are numerous such examples of entrepreneurs helping combat Covid-19 around the world.
For those looking to pivot or launch a new startup, we encourage you to explore what you can contribute to some of these or other ‘HMW’ ideas to help combat the crisis. We are making our Social Entrepreneurship Platform available to entrepreneurs for free for 2 months, starting April 20th. We hope you will join us and look forward to helping you through these challenging times.
We welcome your feedback and ideas to contribute to our open-source map for entrepreneurs to combat coronavirus. Please leave a note in the comments below or email me at suraj.kripalani[at]bonbillo.com.
We will get through this and come out stronger together.
Stay safe and healthy,
Co-Founder and CEO, BonBillo
A big thank you to BonBillo team members, Julia Turnbull, Rachel O’Neil and Mayank Kumar, and BonBillo mentor, Kunal Paymaster, for their contribution with the map. 🙌
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