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Willingness to pay for ORS/Zinc kits in Zambia

16 October 2013

The objective of this study was to rigorously measure willingness to pay for the anti-diarrhoeal Kit Yamoyo product in rural Monze District, Zambia to inform scale-up decisions.

Decision-makers’ challenge

ColaLife, a registered nonprofit in the United Kingdom, is working to bring rural and urban Zambians market access to affordable, easy-to-use anti-diarrheal kits containing a single course of ORS/zinc as well as soap. With funding from DFID and support from other partners, including the Ministry of Health and UNICEF Zambia, ColaLife piloted and was exploring scaling up the various facets of bringing Kit Yamoyo to market: kit design and production, distribution, retail, and advertising.  To inform scale-up and pricing, ColaLife engaged IDinsight to assess the price elasticity of demand for Kit Yamoyo in rural and urban areas.

Impact opportunity

Diarrheal disease is the third largest killer of children under the age of five in Zambia, killing roughly 15,000 children every year. Although the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended oral rehydration salts (ORS) and zinc supplement treatments as a cost-effective and efficient way to manage it, UNICEF estimates that only 60% of those in Zambia with diarrhea are being treated with ORS.1 One major barrier to uptake is lack of access to this simple treatment.

Our approach

In 2013 and 2014, IDinsight utilized 4th-price “Vickrey” auctions to map the demand for Kit Yamoyo in rural Monze, Zambia and urban Copperbelt Province.

The results

We found that K5.00 (about US$0.90) stood out as a price point affordable to about a third of one relevant customer base—mothers with under-five children—without any advance saving or prior awareness of the product. The follow-up study in urban areas also examined demand for two alternative Kit Yamoyo product designs.

  1. 1. Ministry of Health of Zambia. Demographic and Health Survey 2007