Balijepalli Sailakshmi

Ashoka Fellow
Chennai, India
Fellow Since 2012


This profile was prepared when Balijepalli Sailakshmi was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2012.
The New Idea
While there exists a large network of government hospitals in India, they are failing to provide quality, timely care to patients, especially to children, because of inefficient management and lack of transparency. Dr. Sai is building a supportive and educational system that proves minimal investments in administrative and management practices can significantly improve health outcomes.

Focusing on neonatal and pediatric care, Dr. Sai involves stakeholders such as local governments, educational institutions, and private providers to address the gaps in public healthcare. Taking a partnership approach Dr. Sai gained the trust of the government medical system by offering solutions to the biggest problems it is facing. By intervening from within the system and leveraging existing government budgets and schemes, Dr. Sai addresses the major governance and management failures responsible for the poor quality of care—namely drug supply, equipment maintenance, diagnostic capability, and manpower.

Dr. Sai is also building a health and prevention-oriented system on the ground by educating communities and raising their agency in monitoring healthcare. These measures ensure the timely manner of quality health interventions.

As a result of Dr. Sai’s initiative over the last three years, every district in Tamil Nadu has been ensured access to institutionalized and integrated neonatal care, while she is expanding the program to include overall pediatric care and expand it in other states.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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