Marc Koska, OBE, our social impact client has devoted his 30 professional career to global health. It is not overstating Marc's impact to say that he has radically changed the world’s thinking and practice on a critical scientific, economic and technological issue.
25 years ago Marc’s invention of the K1 Auto-Disable (AD) syringe made it economically competitive, for the first time, to deploy truly safe syringes that cannot be reused and therefore cannot accidentally spread disease, , Marc persuaded the WHO to mandate exclusive use of AD syringes for all curative injections worldwide. Subsequent global use of the K1 has saved 10 million lives.
Marc's new innovation, ApiJect, is a single-use, prefilled syringe designed to replace traditional vials and syringes for all medical injections, not just vaccines -. Apiject supports high-speed, aseptic packaging of almost any drug in its small plastic container with pre-attached needle. Proven high-speed “Blow-Fill-Seal” plastics technology enables Apiject to deliver non-reusable injections at 20-40% less cost than 10-dose vials and syringes.
Marc is currently working in the US to support widescale manufacture. We have yet to gain traction in the UK.
Marc took some time out to gives us his thoughts on the current issues around the pandemic:
Marc, with all your expertise on vaccine delivery methods, what are your thoughts on the Covid19 pandemic and how your innovation might help?
What we need is speed, time the enemy here. Any method of delivery that is capable of being able to meet the extreme demands of this pandemic and deliver "population-scale" solutions is obviously what we need.
As the inventor of the single use syringe – and managing to get WHO to engage with your product – what is the biggest challenge you face at the moment?
As a society no one has been drilled on this, everyone is facing daily challenges which also change daily. We are looking for answers on a situation we have not had to face before so we need to think differently about how we address the situation.
Why did you embark on a career as a social innovator ? what motivated you to become engaged on that basis rather than a fully commercial basis.
I've always believed in the aim of combining two value streams : for profit and a motivation driven by purpose and values. Even at a young age I felt that it would be interesting to solve the world's biggest problems and that's what motivates me. It's the reason why we exist – my motivation is to continue to do the work I do and it is a huge honour to be a pioneer in this field.
Click here to view a short film about ApiJect.