An NFT That Saves Lives

May 2021

Noora Health, a nonprofit I've supported for years, just launched a new NFT. It has a dramatic name, Save Thousands of Lives, because that's what the proceeds will do.

Noora has been saving lives for 7 years. They run programs in hospitals in South Asia to teach new mothers how to take care of their babies once they get home. They're in 165 hospitals now. And because they know the numbers before and after they start at a new hospital, they can measure the impact they have. It is massive. For every 1000 live births, they save 9 babies.

This number comes from a study of 133,733 families at 28 different hospitals that Noora conducted in collaboration with the Better Birth team at Ariadne Labs, a joint center for health systems innovation at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Noora is so effective that even if you measure their costs in the most conservative way, by dividing their entire budget by the number of lives saved, the cost of saving a life is the lowest I've seen. $1,235.

For this NFT, they're going to issue a public report tracking how this specific tranche of money is spent, and estimating the number of lives saved as a result.

NFTs are a new territory, and this way of using them is especially new, but I'm excited about its potential. And I'm excited to see what happens with this particular auction, because unlike an NFT representing something that has already happened, this NFT gets better as the price gets higher.

The reserve price was about $2.5 million, because that's what it takes for the name to be accurate: that's what it costs to save 2000 lives. But the higher the price of this NFT goes, the more lives will be saved. What a sentence to be able to write.