An Innovative Jamaican-Made Product Wins “Best New Product” Prize at International Design Excellence Awards

LifeSavers Wipes, a personal hygiene product developed in Jamaica by Georgia Crawford Williams, Dr. Peter Nelson, and Shannon DaCosta, was presented with the “Best New Product” prize for 2019-2021 at the 42nd International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA) on March 31, 2022, at the Miami Beach Convention Center. LifeSavers Wipes, a personal hygiene product, are formulated to change color if abnormal glucose levels are found in urine. The wipes join previous winners of the award, which include Huggies pull-ups, Purex three-in-one laundry sheets, Lysol disinfectant wipes, and Swiffers from Procter & Gamble, as game-changing products in the engineered fabric industry. LifeSavers Wipes won the top prize against its competitors Organic 2.0, a biodegradable wipe, and MDP, a bladder control product for men.

In an interview with “Your Health Your Wealth,” Crawford Williams said she was inspired to create LifeSavers Wipes when a diabetic woman she knew personally lost her sight because she did not have the resources required to monitor her condition adequately.

More than 14 percent of Jamaica’s population has diabetes, Crawford added. Glucose levels must be monitored constantly in order to control the disease and allow sufferers to lead healthy lives. Monitoring devices are not easily obtained in countries with economic challenges, which means that 1.6 million diabetics die every year while many more go blind or lose limbs, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). While premature death rates are dropping for other non-communicable diseases, those for diabetes have been rising.

Lifesavers Wipes

It is Crawford’s goal to ensure that there is an easier, more convenient, and more affordable way for people to determine whether they need to seek medical attention before their condition worsens. Pregnant women, who have an elevated risk of developing gestational diabetes, would also benefit from LifeSavers Wipes.

In terms of functionality, when a user wipes the genital area as usual after passing urine, a solution embedded in the wipe, which has been rigorously tested to ensure its safety, reacts with the urine deposited on it and detects abnormal levels of glucose. Results are available 45 to 90 seconds after use.

Lifesavers Wipes - Georgia Crawford Williams

Upon winning the award, Crawford Williams thanked those who helped in making the product and hoped to inspire others to pursue their goals. She noted that she and her co-developers were in competition with billion-dollar companies but were confident in their ability to win. She encouraged young people to pay attention to the thought behind the saying “We she ‘wi likkle but we tallawah” and emphasized that the LifeSavers product was developed in Jamaica and that the brilliant involved were born, raised, and educated in Jamaica. She added that the funding for her project was provided by her family and friends in Jamaica.

Crawford Williams and the other developers of LifeSavers Wipes plan to expand the product line to include wipes that can detect pregnancy and urinary tract infections (UTIs). Over the longer term, the company wants all toilet papers to have the ability to signal to users when other health abnormalities are present.

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