Modular Facilities can facilitate healthcare resilience in conflict-prone regions
How portable factory systems, particularly modular facilities, reshape healthcare and pharmaceutical industries in conflict-prone regions.
Unveiling the Healthcare Crisis
In 2017, more than half of all health facilities were closed in Yemen due to war. The world has long witnessed how persistent conflicts in West Asian countries have severely impacted healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors, leaving them grappling with insufficient resources, disrupted supply chains, and limited access to medical services. WHO’s Surveillance System for Attacks on Healthcare has reported 427 attacks on the healthcare system in Asia and Africa so far. This exacerbates existing disease burdens and diminishes residents’ quality of life. To achieve global healthcare equity, local pharmaceutical development is crucial. Collaborative efforts, research, and advancements in treatments are essential now as residents face increased vulnerability to preventable illnesses. Resolving these conflicts is vital not only geopolitically but for humanity’s well-being.
A Call for Equity Through Modular facilities
The traditional approach to development cannot provide immediate or urgent solutions to this mammoth problem. Technology can help fill this gap. Portable factory systems such as modular facilities can lay the path to achieving global health equity. The modular facilities are designed to be swiftly deployable. They offer an innovative way to establish on-site biopharmaceutical manufacturing capabilities. These systems can be customised to produce essential medications, vaccines, and medical equipment, ensuring a reliable supply of life-saving resources.
Technology’s Healing Touch
Portable factory systems such as modular facilities can be tailored to the specific healthcare needs of the affected population. For example, when talking about regions grappling with the aftermath of conflict, access to clean water becomes a luxury. The portable and modular systems can be customised to be equipped with modules that can purify water.
These modular facilities can also be fine-tuned to address local disease patterns. It has already been reported time and again by various reliable sources that conflict zones and LMICs deal with specific disease outbreaks, which differ from global trends. The feature of rapid customisation in modular facilities will help in efficient pharmaceutical production as these systems can swiftly adapt to local pathogenic challenges.
Beyond addressing immediate healthcare needs such as local production of medicines and vaccines, the prefabricated, portable, modular facilities can also contribute to the long-term development and sustainability of the pharmaceutical sector in these regions. Establishing local pharmaceutical production can eventually reduce dependence on imported drugs and medical supplies, which often get disrupted during conflicts. The modular facilities will empower the local population to take control of their healthcare needs and eventually contribute to the economy.
This is not it. By empowering the local population to take control of their healthcare, the possibilities of creating local think tanks that can focus on the specific needs of the region also increase. These cleanroom systems can be equipped for research and development (R&D) activities. Local scientists and researchers can work on developing new medications, vaccines, and medical technologies that are tailored to the region’s specific disease challenges. This can lead to innovations that address local health concerns.
WHO supports countries’ NCD surveillance systems comprehensively, from inception to data utilisation. Developing proper facilities through prefabricated, portable, modular facilities can be integrated with surveillance systems to monitor disease patterns and respond rapidly to outbreaks. This real-time data can help authorities and healthcare providers allocate resources efficiently and respond effectively to emerging health threats.
From Crisis to Collaboration
If we take a step away from the public health welfare advantages of implementing modular facilities in biopharma manufacturing. Establishing regional pharmaceutical manufacturing capability can stimulate economic growth, which is crucial for conflict-prone regions. It creates job opportunities, encourages investments, and contributes to the overall economic development of the area. And the use of prefabricated, portable, modular facilities in developing the local manufacturing units can expedite the whole process. Not only that, the modular facility approach can attract international partnerships, collaborations, and investments. This not only provides financial support but also brings in expertise and knowledge from various organisations to assist in building a self-sufficient pharmaceutical sector.
Adapting to Tomorrow’s Challenges
One of the biggest upsides of implementing prefabricated, portable, modular facilities is that, over time, the pharmaceutical needs of a region may change due to shifting disease patterns or advancements in medical science. Modular facilities flexibility allows them to adapt to these changes efficiently, ensuring that the produced medications remain relevant and effective.
The versatility of prefabricated cleanrooms doesn’t end here; their portability adds another layer to it. It allows easy relocation when the need arises. The modular design facilitates easy disassembly and reassembly, enabling them to be moved to a different location without compromising their functionality or structural integrity. Together these adaptabilities ensure that the cleanrooms can swiftly respond to changing requirements or situations of the time. This makes them a valuable asset in dynamic environments of pharmaceutical manufacturing and biotechnology.
PodTech’s technology and dedication to achieving global health equity offer a comprehensive solution to establishing a robust pharmaceutical industry in any conflict-prone region. Our work goes beyond just manufacturing medicines by contributing to research, local empowerment, and overall healthcare infrastructure development. Our prefabricated systems have the potential to catalyse positive change and improve the well-being of populations facing significant challenges due to conflicts.