Global Healthcare Innovation Award
17 May, 2017
SERENA Hotel, Islamabad

Association for Humanitarian Development wins share of US $1 Million Global Healthcare Innovation Award

Group Pictures of AWARD GSK 2016 at Serena Hotel Islamabad
Group Pictures of AWARD GSK 2016 at Serena Hotel Islamabad.
Khurshid Bhatti getting award HIA 2016 GSK from Azizulhaq CEO, GSK Pakistan.
Khurshid Bhatti getting award HIA 2016 GSK from Azizulhaq CEO, GSK Pakistan.
Nadi filter post transported to villages.
Nadi filter post transported to villages.
  • Innovation uses local materials and technology in replicable water purification system.
  • 70 per cent of rural communities in Pakistan still drink contaminated water; children under-five especially vulnerable.

Islamabad, Pakistan –The Association for Humanitarian Development (AHD), a Hyderabad-based community organisation, has been awarded US$320,000 fora biological water-filtering initiative that provides hundreds of thousands of families with clean water.

The Pakistani group is one of four worldwide to have won a share of the fifth Healthcare Innovation Award, funded by global healthcare company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). The water purification initiative was highlighted at a roundtable discussion with stakeholders and policymakers today to discuss the challenge of providing safe drinking water, how AHD’s innovation could be scaled to reach more people and the potential for it to spur other health innovations in Pakistan.

Currently, 70 per cent of rural communities in Pakistan still drink contaminated water, with children under-five especially vulnerable. Contaminated drinking water is a major factor in diarrhoeal deaths and several neglected tropical diseases, including intestinal worms, schistosomiasis and trachoma. Recent rapid urbanisation, susceptibility to floods and the challenging terrain of Pakistan has made accessing safe water extremely difficult for the poorest people.

To expand access to safe water, AHD introduced a simple and replicable bio-sand water filter, known as a “Nadi” filter, to hundreds of vulnerable villages. The innovation removes 98 to 100 per cent of biological contamination and can reduce diarrheal diseases by up to 40 per cent.

The filter is sourced and constructed from locally available materials, meaning that one unit, which serves a household of eight to ten people, costs just Rs 1,000-1,500. AHD also provides training to local staff and communities to enable them to take ownership of the innovation by constructing and repairing their own filters. Since launching in 2007, the Nadi Filter has provided clean and safe drinking water to 400,000 households.

Mr A Khurshid Bhatti, Founder and CEO, AHD: "We are honoured to receive this Award in recognition of our efforts. We want to ensure that even the most remote communities have access to clean water. The unique part of our work is that we use entirely locally available materials and adopt a participatory approach to train communities. This ensures the Nadi filter remains available at a low-cost and can be adopted by families across the country."

Mr. Azizul Huq, Vice President and General Manager, GSK Pakistan: "The Nadi filter is a fantastic innovation, which can be easily replicated across Pakistan. It clearly demonstrates the power of community-based organisations to drive the development and implementation of innovations, which are tailored to meet the needs and requirements of local communities. We are proud to reward AHD for the introduction of this scalable Nadi filter, which has the potential to continue saving many more young children’s lives."

AHD's pioneering work follows a holistic model, consisting of needs assessments, community training, and monitoring and evaluation. The Healthcare Innovation Award can help support AHD in scaling-up their intervention to all areas of Pakistan and Asia South Pacific.

The Healthcare Innovation Award is a key initiative delivered by GSK, which aims to reward sustainable and scalable healthcare innovations that have resulted in tangible improvements to under-five child survival rates.

Notes to editors

About the Healthcare Innovation Award
In 2013, GSK launched the first US$1 million Healthcare Innovation Award to identify and reward innovations that have proven successful in reducing child deaths in developing countries. As the best solutions to a particular challenge often come from those living and working closest to it, organisations from across the developing world were invited to nominate examples of innovative healthcare approaches they have discovered or implemented. Entrants to the Award had to ensure their approaches had resulted in tangible improvements to under-five child survival rates, were sustainable and have the potential to be replicated.

About GSK
GSK – one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies – is committed to improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer. For further information please visit