Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev)

aka D-Rev   |   San Francisco, CA   |  https://equalizehealth.org/

Mission

We create medical technology for everyone.

Ruling year info

2008

Principal Officer

Krista Donaldson

Main address

695 Minnesota Street

San Francisco, CA 94107 USA

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EIN

26-0642778

NTEE code info

Engineering and Technology Research, Services (U40)

International Development, Relief Services (Q30)

Nonprofit Management (S50)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Equalize Health believes in a world where we all have access to world-class medical treatment, no matter where we live. Together, we are on a mission to create medical technology for everyone.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Brilliance

Severe jaundice affects 12% of newborns worldwide and is the number one reason why babies are admitted to hospitals. It’s barely an issue in the West, but a combination of factors in developing countries, including lack of access to medical care, inadequate infrastructure, and ineffective education, diagnosis, and treatment, results in a high level of easily preventable brain damages and deaths from severe jaundice. Existing treatment devices are often ineffective and have prohibitively high maintenance costs, or are maladapted to inconsistent electricity supplies prevalent in low-resource countries. Brilliance, an affordable, world-class phototherapy device targeted at low-resource urban and peri-urban hospitals and clinics, addresses these design challenges and provides effective, efficient, and environment-appropriate phototherapy treatment for a fraction of the cost of comparable Western devices.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
People with diseases and illnesses

Globally, over 25 million people lack mobility due to physical impairment. In the developing world, trauma, disease, and natural disasters result in one million new above-knee amputees per year. For many patients living in low- and middle-income countries, modern prosthetics are prohibitively expensive. Through its ReMotion project, Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev) provided advanced and affordable prostheses to amputees in the developing world, empowering them through mobility and improved livelihoods. Our ReMotion Knee, a polymer-based knee joint for above-knee amputees, delivers gait performance, comparable to Western knees that cost more than $4,000 USD, but retails for less than $85. Since 2008, more than 4,500 patients in the developing world have regained mobility with the ReMotion Knee. It has recently been spun off to a leading prosthetics not-for-profit for increased impact.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities
Adults

7% of all newborns—30% of all premature babies—have respiratory distress, and RDS is the major contributor. RDS generally begins immediately after birth and results in nearly 100% mortality if left untreated.

As a global society, we have the know-how, technology, and methods to save these children. However, a huge disparity still exists - in the United States, mortality from RDS is less than 2%, yet in India it is 20%. Quality and contextually-appropriate Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) devices can effectively treat almost all of these babies who would otherwise perish. CPAP and other advanced therapies have revolutionized treatment in high-income regions, but India, for example, lags.

To close the quality healthcare gap globally, every baby should have access to safe, effective CPAP to treat respiratory distress. At Equalize Health, we believe every baby should have the chance to survive and thrive.

In developing a game-changing CPAP device, we are designing for needs not just of the patients, but of healthcare practitioners, the hospitals, and their context. Equalize Health is designing a next generation CPAP device that leverages advances in medical research and sensor technology to provide superior respiratory support while lessening the burden on already thinly-stretched NICU nursing staff. Our goal is to end newborn deaths from respiratory distress syndrome. We will improve the delivery of respiratory support to newborns, and enable referral hospitals to effectively manage babies with moderate RDS. In doing so, centralized speciality care hospitals will also have greater space and capacity to treat the babies who are the sickest.

While Equalize Health designs for global scaling, our initial geographic focus is India and East Africa. We want to create a world where hardworking clinicians have the responsive technology they need to save lives. In recognizing and designing for every day challenges of NICUs, we will end the impossible dilemmas several nurses have reported to us that they face every day: deciding to care for one baby at the cost of ignoring another.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
Economically disadvantaged people

Pneumonia, diarrhea, and sepsis are together responsible for almost one-third of all under-5 deaths. These and other common infectious diseases are the leading causes of death among children under 5. All of these diseases are preventable and treatable—the technology and know-how exists. In high-income countries, rarely do babies die from them.

To achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 3 we must close this gap by ending preventable deaths of newborns and children under 5 years of age, reducing neonatal and child mortality to 12 and 25 per 1000 live births, respectively.

Every year, 85 million babies in their first days of life receive formula or animal milk. While formula, also derived from animal milk, offers the potential to save lives when a mom is unable to nurse, it also has a dangerous downside: 14 times increased risk of death.

Human breast milk prevents infection in a way that animal milk cannot, helping a baby’s digestive system colonize healthy bacteria, while preventing harmful pathogens from attaching to the stomach lining. Exclusive breastfeeding in the first months of life would save over 800,000 babies each year.

Equalize Health is working with global partners to develop a suite of user-centric products to support mothers with lactation, and support health professionals to strengthen human milk banking and Lactation Management Centres. Equalize Health’s focus is referral hospitals in low-income regions, starting with India and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Our fieldwork indicates that 30-50% of babies in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) require nutritional support, ideally human milk. The reasons why mothers are unable to breastfeed range. Among those we’ve heard: physical separation from their baby, challenges nursing, and/or maternal death in childbirth.

Investing in Under 5 Nutrition is already among the most cost effective investments in low resource settings. Within Nutrition, breastfeeding projects provide the highest returns by a factor of 3, $35 per $1 spent.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
Economically disadvantaged people

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of patients treated

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

People with diseases and illnesses

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Unique number of patients treated by D-Rev devices each year.

Averted DALYs (disability adjusted life years)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

People with diseases and illnesses

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number of years of healthy life made possible through the use of D-Rev devices.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Equalize Health, a nonprofit product company, believes all people deserve products that can improve their lives regardless of their gender, age, or purchasing capacity. We develop products that improve the health and increase the incomes of people at the base of the pyramid (BOP) – ensuring that no matter where you were born you have access to the world’s best technologies. Equalize Health drives the whole design process: identifying the need, designing a solution, delivering the product to target users, and scaling the solution to achieve impact. We don’t design products for poor people – we design world-class, affordable devices for people who need them.

We currently have several products in development, but our priorities are newborn jaundice (which our Brilliance family of products treat using phototherapy), newborn respiratory distress (our neonatal CPAP device is coming soon), telementoring (through our ECHO program), nutrition, and maternal health.

Equalize Health develops solutions to address the needs of people in the developing world that are frequently overlooked or undervalued. Too often, people concerned with international development or global health direct their efforts toward solving the world’s biggest health problems and neglect diseases like jaundice – which are so easily treatable that it is easy to ignore the access gap that leaves nearly six million babies at risk each year.

And in the West, we often think that excess supply, such as overstock or used prosthetic legs, will be helpful when donated to low-income amputees without realizing the harm it will cause. Donated devices were not designed for the context where they end up, receiving institutions often aren’t educated on device specifics, and replacement parts are near impossible to come by. Equalize Health designs sustainable, tailor-fit solutions to these problems.

Equalize Health designs and develops products that have the potential to create measurable, data-driven, positive impact on people at the BOP. Our products are currently in use in over 70 countries, including Colombia, Ecuador, Fiji, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Liberia, Malawi, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, and Uganda.

At Equalize Health, we design and deliver affordable products that address needs in the developing world. But we don’t stop at creating products; we drive the entire design process from need-finding, prototyping, and design to deliver, manufacturability, scale up, and impact assessment.

We work to ensure that our innovations are not only designed well, but that they reach their target users. At Equalize Health we design not just for our intended end-users, but for every person that our products touch. Our patients get the mobility they need, nurses learn to be savvy in operating our phototherapy devices, and hospitals and clinics purchase our products at a reasonable value. We also view patients’ families, service technicians, purchasing decision makers, and even salespeople and manufacturing staff as important customers whose needs need to be considered in the design process.

Equalize Health believes a market-based approach to product development is challenging but critical. We know it is not enough to just design a product, but to ensure it reaches people. To do this we offer products for purchase – not relying on donations. After a product is ready for sale, we leverage established local markets, working closely with suppliers, manufacturers and distributors to ensure that our products are fully integrated into delivery channels that bring them to places where they are needed.

Our Neonatal Jaundice line of products, Brilliance, became commercially available in India in November 2012 and has since taken off around the world. More than 4,000 units have been installed worldwide; we estimate that more than 900,000 babies have been treated with Brilliance.

To scale the first version of the ReMotion Knee in 2015, we partnered with the JaipurFoot Organization, the largest supplier and distributor of prosthetics in India, for clinical fitting and critical user feedback. JaipurFoot currently uses ReMotion v1 to treat its patients in 22 clinics in India and has fitted over 5,000 amputees. ReMotion retails at $80, or 1/10th of the price of comparable knee joints. It has recently been spun off to Range of Motion Project (ROMP), a leading prosthetics not-for-profit, for increased impact.

Equalize Health is composed of a world-class, talented team of engineers, designers, and business professionals. Krista Donaldson, Ph.D., is our CEO. She has driven innovation for over 15 years in product design, engineering, and international development. Because of her leadership of Equalize Health, she has been named to the Silicon Valley 40 Under 40, Fast Company’s Co. Design 50 Designers Shaping the Future, and the Public Interest Design 100. She was also a TEDxStanford, TEDWomen, and a Clinton Global Initiative speaker, 2010-2012 Rainer Arnhold Fellow, and 2011 Pop! Tech Social Innovation Fellow.

Dr. Donaldson oversees a talented, global team of designers, engineers, medical professionals, and business minds, working out of India, Kenya, and USA.

Equalize Health is structured as a non-profit, but operates product delivery similarly to a for-profit technology firm. Equalize Health relies on grant funding and earned revenue from product sales through licensing and royalty agreements to cover R&D, design, and development costs. Once a product launches commercially, it sells and scales profitably through build-in profit margins without outside support. We re-invest profits from product sales in R&D for new products and impact assessment

Since Dr. Donaldson took over the leadership and management of Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev) in 2009, we have achieved significant progress in meeting our goals and intended impact. In 2012, we successfully launched a life-changing medical device on the market, Brilliance, and we launched another top-quality product, the ReMotion Knee v3, to market in 2015.

Since the launch of Brilliance, more than 900,000 babies have been treated with the phototherapy device; more than 800,000 babies have been treated who otherwise who would not have received effective treatment; and over 13,000 newborn deaths and disabilities have been averted. We have also developed the ReMotion Knee v3 for global prosthetic markets. Through our partnership with JaipurFoot Organization, we have fit more than 5,000 amputees with the ReMotion Knee v1 in India, Sri Lanka, Iraq, Ecuador, Senegal and Fiji. Of these patients, 79% are still wearing their prostheses compared to 65% in a patient study on a previous knee model used by JaipurFoot; and 95% of patients report no failures in ReMotion Knees.

Coming soon, we will launch our nCPAP (neonatal continuous positive air pressure) device, which will ensure that high-quality newborn RDS treatment is within most countries' capacity to implement and save more newborn babies' lives.

Equalize Health’s innovative mission, products, results and leadership have been recognized by a number of leading organizations in the field. Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev) was named 2014 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer and as the 25th “World’s Most Innovative Companies” by Fast Company in 2013. Our ReMotion Knee won the Proto Labs Cool Idea Award in 2012, the Stanford BASES Challenge for business models that create a positive social or environmental impact, and the University of California-Berkeley Haas Global Social Venture Competition (GSVC) 2010. Comet, our portable phototherapy device, won a USAID Saving Lives at Birth award in 2012.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    SMS text surveys, Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Direct user feedback via email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    We adjusted the design of our forthcoming neonatal CPAP based on feedback we received from clinicians working in hospitals where we aim to distribute our devices after market launch. We learned that many hospitals have high baby to nurse ratios due to staff shortages and high turnover. Therefore, a nurse must manage many newborn patients requiring vigilant CPAP treatment. We designed our CPAP device using sensor technology that alert nurses of dangerous disruption in therapy even if they are on the other side of a NICU caring for another patient. Another design change we made based on user-feedback is adding a battery back-up to our CPAP device. Clinicians provided feedback that a power alternative is important for power outages and when they need to transport a patient.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, We don’t have the right technology to collect and aggregate feedback efficiently, The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection,

Financials

Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev)
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev)

Board of directors
as of 11/17/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Bill Unger

Equalize Health

Bill Unger

Equalize Health

Jenn Buechel

Guardant Health

Stephanie Dodson

Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation

Tony MacDonald

Samasource Inc

Minette Norman

Autodesk

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/02/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability