LOCATION: Chennai, India

SUMMARY: Our mission is to bring simplicity and dignity to women’s health worldwide. We manufacture and distribute low-cost, high-quality products carefully designed to meet the unique needs of women in low-resource settings, comprehensively targeting the entire Continuum of reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCH+A) for intergenerational well-being.

PROBLEM SPACE: “Women’s health, survival and well-being is an urgent need, prioritized under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. More than 5 million mothers and infants die annually. Over 80 percent of those deaths are concentrated in 30 countries (India claiming the most). Infection (preventable infection) is a leading cause of death and disability for mothers and newborns. Each year, 3 million newborns die in the first month of life, infection accounting for over one third of deaths.

Beyond the vulnerable time around childbirth, women and girls face significant challenges – from the onset of menstruation through postpartum care and beyond, the unique needs of women and girls in low-resource settings go silent and unserved. Only 5% of women in India use sanitary pads (77% use old cloth). Globally, less than 40% of infants are breastfed exclusively for six months. Postpartum hemorrhage is a leading case of maternal deaths, yet very little research has been done on postpartum morbidity affecting women in days following birth in low-resource settings.

Integrated solutions are the need of the hour. Instead of addressing issues in silos, we must provide and promote health, survival, and wellbeing seamlessly across the entire continuum, empowering grassroots demand for the same.”

SOLUTION: “Our first of its kind solution is a product suite and delivery model designed to address critical gaps in the RMNCH+A continuum, providing health and livelihood to women and girls.

Signature to the ayzh brand is a suite of kit style products that bundle essential commodities for RMNCH+A. Our core product is a $3 Clean Birth Kit containing simple tools recommended by the World Health Organization to prevent infection at the time of childbirth. Serving as a checklist of best practices, the kit integrates tools and training that ensure sterility regardless of delivery room conditions. This saves precious time in resource-constrained facilties while giving health workers and women the knowledge and confidence to adhere to global standards. Furthermore, we employ local Indian women to assemble the kits (packaged in a biodegradable jute bag that mothers reuse as a purse). Upon proving a sustainable model for manufacturing and distributing Clean Birth Kits, we realized a clear social and business need to meet and anticipate additional needs of existing (and future) customers. Answering this demand, our product line now includes Essential Newborn Kits, Postpartum Care Kits, and Menstrual Hygiene Kits – a one stop shop for women’s health and hygiene.”