Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn has launched a new pilot program that aims to enhance mobility health services in rural areas of South Africa and Nigeria.
“At Ford, we are looking beyond the traditional role vehicles play in society and are aggressively pursuing solutions to address the human challenges faced around the globe,” says Bill Ford Jr., executive chairman of the company. “Those challenges take us to remote areas where we can use advanced vehicle and connectivity technologies to change people’s lives and make the world a better place.”
Through the Ford Project Better World program, the company will use modified Ford Rangers and work with organizations to deliver health, education, and nutrition to 20,000 children and 10,000 adults in South Africa.
The Rangers, which will be equipped with connectivity technology such as a video projector, a mobile refrigerator, and a table-top computer, will operate as mobile clinics to deliver health services, dispense medication for chronic conditions, and monitor the growth of children.
Ford says the information gathered from the South African program will aid agencies in tracking the health of children and help with protective services.
In Nigeria, the company will be training technicians with Riders for Health, an international nonprofit that provides mobile health care, on how to maintain their motorcycles, four-wheeled vehicles, and trucks.
Ford says the company will equip the nonprofit’s vehicles with sensors and Ford’s OpenXC technology to collect data designed to make Riders for Health work more efficient and create maps of remote areas of the West African nation.