Fondation Pierre Fabre

The use of fingerprint readers/Iris scanners to reduce default rate of TB treatments

Main beneficiary countries:
India - Cambodia - Afghanistan - Tanzania

About the sponsor

Operation ASHA

Operation ASHA is a last mile program committed to providing high quality Tuberculosis treatment, medicines and other services to the doorsteps of the slum dwellers.

Sector: Health: Healthcare professionals and structures

Country of origin: India

The organisation has:

Full-Time Equivalents
Service providers

Initiative overview

Healthcare themes targeted

  • Infectious diseases

Stage of development:

  • Routine project/operational

Area where initiative is utilised

  • International (in several countries)

Initiative start date

  • 06/10/2010


Financing method

  • Public (grant/subsidies, call for proposals/call for tender, etc.)
  • Private (private investors, crowdfunding, philanthropy, etc.)
  • NGO
  • Government agency (i.e AFD, USAID, etc.)
  • Intergovernmental or international agency

Economic model(s)

  • Donations
  • License fees

About the initiative

Tuberculosis patients tend to stop taking their medication as the treatment progresses, especially when they start feeling better and the symptoms disappear. This can be fatal since them dropping out of the program can result in Multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-Tb) and then subsequently extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB).

With the proposed solution, we have reduced default rate from 21% to 3%.

We use Biometric based technology to ensure that missed doses are reduced to a minimum and hence the default rate (i.e. patients dropping out of the program) are also reduced to a minimum). If patients drop out of the program, it can be fatal since they have the risk of contracting MDR-TB and then subsequently XDR-TB which is fatal. Nearly 50% of patients who drop out of the program get MDR-TB. Using out technology, the patient’s fingerprint is scanned simultaneously with a CHW’s at our center when the patient comes to take his medication. This is proof that the patient has indeed taken the medication under direct supervision (DOTS). Also, the system is aware of what patients are supposed to come in for taking their medicine. If they do not come in when they are supposed to, the system generates a text alert on the CHW’s mobile phone. The CHW then goes to the patient’s house to give him the medication and some additional counselling.

Fields of application:

Patient monitoring and medical data

Target audience

  • Sick people

Initiative objectives

  • Decreased mortality
  • Decreased morbidity
  • Reduced suffering
  • Improved treatment

Key figures

30000 Number of beneficiaries since launch

15000 Number of users per Year

Materials used

  • Cellular (mobile) phone
  • Tablet
  • Connected objects

Technologies used

  • Mobile telecommunications (without data connection)
  • Internet
  • Geolocation
  • Mobile app (Android, iOS, Windows Phone, HTML5, etc.)

Offline use


Open Source


Open Data


Independent evaluation

evaluated independently



Academic entities: Universities, research laboratories, etc.