German animal health firm Boehringer Ingelheim has launched a new mobile app that seeks to better monitor day-to-day livestock health management activities more effectively using Big Data.
The ‘LastMile’ initiative is an integrated, solutions-driven program seeking to address crucial animal health challenges by making animal medical resources available in hard-to-reach areas in Africa.
The initiative targets ruminants, such as sheep, goats along with cattle, and poultry. It was initially launched in Kenya, and other key markets throughout Africa including Cameroon, Nigeria, Mali, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia, with a plan to expand in Tanzania.
Established with support from the Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines (GALVmed) and funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, ‘LastMile’ aims to bridge current gaps in access, availability, and awareness of animal healthcare solutions for smallholder farmers.
Emilie Veillat, LastMile’s application lead at the Veterinary Public Health Center at Boehringer Ingelheim said the initiative is an important part of the company’s vision and aims to support our communities as well as improve both human and animal health.
“I am pleased we have launched this mobile app which is not only critical for accurate data collection and monitoring, but it also helps teams stay connected, particularly in these challenging times of the pandemic,” she said.
The program’s mission is to create long-lasting partnerships with the local farming community in an effort to establish and drive sustainable businesses that are integrated into the wider national economy.
With the new app, field force and teams working on the LastMile project are now able to manage their day-to-day activities and work more effectively with farmers and veterinarians.
The objective for rolling out the use of the app is to monitor the activities accurately, collect data, measure the impact and reach of the initiative, as well as to improve the understanding and knowledge about the smallholder farmer sector for better-informed decision-making in the future.
“In addition, the app has proven critical in the current times of social distancing and heightened safety measures for regular and easy interactions with all our stakeholders.”
Some of the main features include a calendar section, farm and retail visit sections, training part covering diseases and product information and also surveys to gather specific information about the target market.
GALVmed works with partners to make livestock vaccines, medicines and diagnostics accessible and available to millions of smallholder farmers in developing countries who depend on livestock for their livelihood.
The international not-for-profit company aims to make a significant contribution towards transformational change in the smallholder livestock health landscape by developing a portfolio of high-impact products and initiating a range of private sector market initiatives operating at scale in the smallholder sector in Africa.