Healthy Cities



Fast, accurate disease detection to enable rapid response

Team Lead

Katherine Clayton

Solution Pitch

The Problem

There are nearly 3 million cases of cholera across 47 countries each year—often caused by contaminated water following a major disaster. This preventable disease costs $2 billion yearly in treatment and lost productivity. Yet current detection technologies are expensive, and it takes nearly a week to get results, leaving at-risk populations vulnerable to widespread outbreaks.

The Solution

OmniVis is transforming cholera detection and response through a testing system that identifies water-based contamination in a mere half-hour. The handheld device combines hardware and a single-use kit. Its findings can generate early warnings of disease hotspots to prevent outbreaks, while highlighting contaminated water for immediate treatment.

After collecting and analyzing available data, the point-of-use device attaches to a smartphone to share detailed results and automated notifications with interested stakeholders, including community leaders and health workers. The cloud-based platform puts public health responders at an advantage: they can use it to proactively control potential outbreaks before they begin and to implement remediation strategies.

Market Opportunity

Cholera affects nearly 3 million people each year, and this number is estimated to be highly underreported. Complementary diagnostics are limited by processing time, lower reliability, and operational inefficiencies. In all, the cholera water detection and surveillance market is estimated to be worth $2 billion. 

Partnership Goals

OmniVis currently seeks:

  • Advice on how to refine its business and pricing strategy for different clients; and
  • Connections to multinational corporations with an interest in diagnostics and disease detection.

Organization Highlights

Some of OmniVis’ notable achievements include:

  • A pilot study with a cholera hospital in Bangladesh that will help adapt the product to different markets in Haiti, Kenya, and Bangladesh;
  • Media coverage on NPR and in TechCrunch.

Existing Partnerships

OmniVis currently partners with:

  • Purdue University, which develops much of the laboratory science behind OmniVis;
  • Notre Dame University, which runs OmniVis’ first user-centered design pilot and scientific field testing in Dhaka, Bangladesh alongside Médecins sans Frontières; and
  • Emerging Pathogens Institute and Code for Africa, which provided feedback on device improvements and have offered to pilot the device.


OmniVis reduced cholera detection time from one week to 30 minutes through smartphone-enabled analytics and a novel testing procedure. 

Solver Team

Organization Type:
For Profit

San Francisco, CA, USA


Working in:



Solution Team:


Fast, Accurate Disease Detection

Solver OmniVis received the $30,000 UN Women She Innovates Prize for Gender-Responsive Innovation from Members UN Women and Johnson & Johnson in 2019 to develop fast, accurate disease detection and enable rapid response.


Fast, Accurate Disease Detection

Solver OmniVis, which develops fast, accurate disease detection to enable rapid response, received a $10,000 grant from Solve in 2019 for being selected as a Healthy Cities Solver.

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