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Monday, October 18, 2010

All It Takes is Motorcycle Maintenance

I ran across this article in the New York Times. It has to do with the two authors' attempt to find people who have uncovered simple solutions to world problems. In this article they found that medical workers could greatly extend their relief efforts by utilizing motorcycles to get to outlying areas of Africa. In addition, they found a way to keep the bikes maintained on a regular basis. Here's an excerpt from this excellent article by Tina Rosenberg and David Bornstein:

    "Until 2008 Kotelo could visit only three villages a week, because he had to reach them on foot, walking for miles and miles. But in February of that year, Kotelo got a motorcycle ─ the best vehicle for reaching rural villages in Africa, most of which are nowhere near a real road. Just as crucial, he was given the tools to keep the bike on the road: he received a helmet and protective clothing, he was taught to ride and trained to start each day with a quick check of the bike. His motorcycle is also tuned up monthly by a technician who comes to him. Now, instead of spending his days walking to his job, he can do his job. Instead of visiting three villages each week, he visits 20. Where else can you find a low-tech investment in health care that increases patient coverage by nearly 600 percent?" -- Tina Rosenberg and David Bornstein

Read the rest of the story.

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