Daniel Zoughbie | Microclinic International
Fellows work to maximize the impact of their ideas through design. They work through a systematic process driven by the five elements of scalability: real impact, big bang for the buck, lasting behavior change, easy replication, and the right path to scale. Fellows participate in the program for two years, working through several design iterations.
THE IDEA: Microclinic International
Contagious health - using social networks to spread healthy behavior: self-recruited groups of diabetics change how they live and than take that change to family and community
HOW IT WORKS
- Diabetes patients recruit two friends or family members to form a “microclinic”
- The three microclinic members go through diabetes training together
- Families are enlisted to change diet and other behaviors in the home
- Microclinics network through social events and day-to-day interaction
THE PERSON: Daniel Zoughbie
Daniel Zoughbie was an Oxford PhD student happily sidetracked by the prospect of spreading health through social networks
The Middle East has the worst rate of diabetes in the world. Daniel’s grandmother died from it. While studying social networks, Daniel realized that healthy behavior could be contagious and he started Microclinic International on a shoestring to test the idea in the Middle East and other parts of the developing world.
Many modern epidemics - AIDS, cardiovascular disease, and adult-onset diabetes, to name a few – are grounded in behavior. They are often affected by social forces and the only lasting way to treat them is through behavior change. Daniel Zoughbie knew behavior can be communicable and he reckoned with a little help, healthy behavior could be just as contagious as unhealthy behavior. He started the Microclinic International (formerly known as Global Micro-Clinic Project) to use emerging knowledge of social networks to design a program of “contagious health.” In Jordan, where diabetes rates are amongst the highest in the world, diabetic individuals recruit members of their social circle to enter diabetes education and behavior change workshops as groups. These “micro-clinics” share what they learn and do with their families and communities. Early results showed remarkable improvements, the Jordanian government is now backing the work and new programs have been launched in India and Kenya.
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