APRIL NEWS | How Kenya is leveraging technology to accelerate public health goals

Because we track locally-driven innovations in healthtech across the African continent, we curate a monthly newsletter to share our most “salient” learnings in more real time. We welcome submissions and suggestions. 

Discover promising innovators driving health product distribution in Africa

Salient has launched an online directory showcasing the exciting innovators featured in our research on health product distribution. Check it out and add your company! Over the coming months we’ll be expanding beyond health product distribution and would love to include your innovations.

How Kenya is leveraging technology to accelerate public health goals

In Kenya, telecoms giant Safaricom is partnering with Nakuru County to pilot a mobile-phone based electronic medical records program for over 100,000 residents. The program will digitize and store residents’ medical records, allow patients access them on their mobile phones and share them with preferred health providers. Improved access to medical records will likely enhance doctors’ understanding of residents’ medical history, and boost chances of providing effective care. The program will be trialed in Nakuru County before possibly being expanded across Kenya.

Kenya’s Lamu County has also adopted the use of Totohealth, a maternity care service, to reduce its high rates of maternal, new-born and child deaths, and encourage hospital deliveries and child vaccinations. The service provides residents in villages across the county with pregnancy and immunization-related information and reminders through a toll-free SMS service.

African health-tech innovators continue to improve access to healthcare

Nigerian e-commerce giant Konga is set to launch KongaHealth, a health product distribution subsidiary, in June. KongaHealth will allow patients order over-the-counter medicines, improving availability of medicines to consumers across the country. KongaHealth will aim to leverage the existing technology, logistics and payments infrastructure of its parent company to power, and scale, its service offerings upon launch.

Kenya-based diagnostics start-up Ilara Health is collaborating with ResApp Health, an Australian healthtech company, to offer ResAppDx, a smartphone app for diagnosing acute respiratory diseases, to partner clinics and clients in Kenya. The partnership improves diagnostics capabilities of Ilara Health‘s 250 partner clinics across Kenya.

In Nigeria, Clafiya is plugging gaps in healthcare access beyond urban centers by connecting patients in semi-urban and rural areas to community health workers for home-based primary care.  As a way to overcome internet access barriers among its target market, Clafiya allows prospective patients to register, request care and pay for its services through USSD-based interactions.

Sustained investment momentum in African healthtech ecosystems

Nile Misr Healthcare, a newly launched $380 million fund, is aiming to invest in healthcare verticals across the continent. The fund, which is already Africa’s largest private equity healthcare platform, is eyeing investments in hospitals, diagnostic facilities, pharmaceuticals and digital healthcare startups in Egypt, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and Côte d’Ivoire.

Kenyan healthtech startup TIBU Health raised a seed round from Blue Haven Initiative and Kepple Africa Ventures to scale its nascent operations. TIBU Health‘s digital platform offers patients on-demand access to healthcare workers who can provide in-person treatment to patients at their preferred location and time. South African healthtech startup, Quro Medical also raised $1.1 million in seed funding from venture capital firms Enza Capital and Mohau Equity Partners. Quro Medical provides in-person and virtual home-based care to patients.

Women-focused e-commerce platform Kasha has received investment from Mastercard to further boost its work of providing women in Kenya and Rwanda with access to health and personal care products.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

  • Yomi KazeemSalient Advisory

ABOUT SALIENT

New models to deliver health information, products, services and financing are desperately needed globally, especially for equity-seeking populations. As a healthcare consulting firm, we co-develop actionable insights and partnerships, supporting global changemakers to advance outcomes and equity.

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