M-TIBA in partnership with the PharmAccess foundation, together with the Northwestern University and the County Government of Kisumu supported the launch of the Grace Onyango Foundation in Kisumu in an effort to promote the digitization of healthcare in Africa. Together the partners brought research institutions, government officials and other key health stakeholders to establish digital health interventions to strengthen healthcare systems and access across Africa.
The Foundation is named after Grace Onyango, an educator and pioneer woman leader who was the first female councilor, mayor, MP of Kisumu and acting speaker of the Kenyan parliament. The conference was attended by a group of multi-sectoral partners in supporting the heart of the Foundation’s mission, which is to have African professionals, especially women innovators, lead the development of digital health interventions, which is the next quantum leap in health care worldwide.
As a leading figure in the healthcare sector, M-TIBA, which was founded through a partnership with Safaricom and PharmAccess Foundation, has been engaging both public and private insurers to connect more Kenyans to health security through insurance plans, thereby creating an entire ecosystem to improve healthcare access through digital technology.
“It is an outstanding privilege to lead a foundation that is committed to promoting digital health innovations in Africa led by African scientists, doctors and engineers. Digital health advances can help the continent jump and fast track universal healthcare access, especially to the remote and low resourced populations in Africa.” Said Chairman of The Grace Onyango Foundation, Prof. Khama Rogo.
“Furthermore, it is meaningful that we can honor the life and public service of such an icon, Mama Grace Onyango, at who I and many other acclaimed professionals learned to read, write and count and our primary goal is to align with other African countries to confront the most challenging dilemmas in healthcare and find new solutions.”
During the launch, topics to help grow the healthcare landscape were taken into consideration noting that Kenyans, especially low-income households, spend a third of their resources on healthcare payments. It is a common occurrence for an individual or family to end up selling their assets to cover up for health costs, or to enable access to treatment of their kin in event of one being diagnosed with a long-term chronic condition or a condition that attracts an excessive treatment cost and their treatment access is limited to certain healthcare facilities. These issues formed center stage during the launch of the Grace Onyango Foundation for Digital Health in Africa.
Through M-TIBA’s partnership with the Medical Credit Fund, facilities are able to access financing that is collateral free with ease through a digital process on their phones, enabling them to focus on their core businesses which in turn provides quality healthcare. Digital technology in health has transformed healthcare significantly and at a faster rate compared to traditional systems. As all healthcare challenges are universal, it is easier to replicate solutions to other regions and even continents. Digital tools like mapping and data automation have been a game changer.
“Building transparency and trust in healthcare has been made possible through our technology solution, which has earned the trust of over 4.6 million users and about 4,000 service providers in Kenya on our digital platform. Universities, research institutions, governments, incubators, investors, digital network providers and others, play a critical role in connecting these key players to African start-ups in digital health.” Said the Managing Director of M-TIBA, Mr. Moses Kuria at the conference launch.
The Grace Onyango Foundation for Digital Health in Africa is working to consolidate these existing solutions and leverage digital innovations through a multi sectoral partnership approach that will shape the future of healthcare. M-TIBA has been able to offer its revolutionary technology to the Nigerian market using the same model and digital system which provide the same solutions servicing two different markets thousands of miles apart, all enabling healthcare penetration.