COVID-19 Response: Spotlight on Temie Giwa-Tubosun
On Valentine’s Day in 2014, 2011-2012 Global Health Corps (GHC) fellow Temie Giwa-Tubosun was taken to the hospital to deliver her son. She experienced such severe bleeding that both she and her baby required intensive care. Fortunately, because of having access to life-saving blood, both survived. However, Temie was left reflecting on how many women in her home country of Nigeria were not as fortunate. She then galvanized her networks to launch LifeBank in Nigeria, with the goal of facilitating blood delivery around Lagos and beyond. When COVID-19 arrived, Temie and her team began to use the LifeBank platform and systems to meet immediate needs for testing and PPE. Temie has won numerous accolades for her work, including the Global Citizen Prize for Business Leader and the Jack Ma African Business Hero Award.
Temie came to GHC in 2011 with a passion for building health systems that work for society’s most marginalized people, with a focus on maternal health. The GHC fellowship was a transformative experience that helped her build confidence and expand her skills and connections.
In 2014, her near-death experience delivering her son prompted her to design and pilot a life-saving blood delivery system. Temie harnessed the power of the GHC network by tapping into their expertise and support as she built out her idea and officially launched LifeBank, a company that helps get blood and other essential medical products to the most needed hospitals and clinics in Nigeria. Temie’s team can get blood to any hospital in its service area within 55 minutes, day or night, so doctors can focus on treating patients rather than on the logistics of locating blood. Because of her work, thousands of lives have been saved, including mothers who have been able to deliver their babies safely.
Temie harnessed and repurposed LifeBank’s resources to respond to the immediate needs of the pandemic this past year. Utilizing their delivery services, LifeBank launched HomeKits to bring COVID-19 PCR testing to the doorsteps of thousands of Nigerians and back to the labs, minimizing person-to-person contact while maximizing testing.