Peter Madonia, COO of The Rockefeller Foundation, presents Dr. Nishtar with her Innovation Award.
As a renowned leader in health policy in her native Pakistan, a leading voice in the global health community, and a prolific author, Dr. Sania Nishtar's advocacy focuses on a holistic vision of health that promotes the wellbeing not only of individuals, but also of communities and nations. Her work to promote peace and broader governance reform is part and parcel of her health care advocacy.
Dr. Nishtar is the founder and president of Heartfile, an NGO that finds the synergies between the private and public sectors, and sees how they can align in new ways to broaden access to health care financing and critically needed health services. This kind of thought leadership in revolutionizing what are called, “Mixed Health Systems” has been the hallmark of Dr. Nishtar’s career. It led her to found Pakistan’s Health Policy Forum. It is the subject of her new book, Choked Pipes, which calls for a radical overhaul of Pakistan’s poorly performing health systems and charts a pathway to reform.
Dr. Nishtar’s bold thinking has helped save lives. In particular, her organization is using existing mobile technology in an innovative way. Thanks to Sania’s efforts, doctors can verify a patient’s poverty status, streamline philanthropic donations, and get people the life-changing and life-saving medical care they need within just 72 hours.
According to the Pakistan Medical Association’s annual report, a child in Pakistan dies every minute of every day from preventable, treatable diseases, and 400,000 infants die each year before they reach their first birthday. Dr. Nishtar is working to reverse this statistic through the innovative ways she has brought together people, organizations, and technology to impact patients' lives and reform an entire nation’s healthcare industry.