Kenya’s Access Afya, is raising funds on crowdfunding platform StartSomeGood to take healthcare into Nairobi slums, in a move that will help people get healthcare when they need it and inexpensive, convenient and quality.
At the moment the startup has raised $10,000 of its $26,000 target.
Founded by Melissa Menke, Co-founder and CEO and Duncan Goldie-Scot
Co-founder and Director, Access Afya, like its name is a social enterprise creating a network of high-tech health centers staffed by registered nurses who give consultations, information, on-site diagnostics, and authentic medication.
Acces Afya has mini-clinics linked to a referral network of larger health facilities and specialists to make it possible for patients to seek care early by bringing knowledgeable workers equipped with eHealth tools directly to patients in informal settlements in Nairobi.
According to them “Sickness and disease have a devastating impact on poor communities in Kenya and around the world. 70% of urban residents in Kenya live in informal settlements, where unsanitary living conditions and overpopulation lead to a high prevalence of communicable disease.’
They says that though mainstream hospitals are there, they are inconvenient as patients have to take multiple modes of transport and spend a lot of time in ques and from facility to facility. ” This wastes time, money, and keeps people out of work and school.”
Access Afya also says the facilities are expensive for majority of Kenyans while the country’s health insurance market is not so well developed. There are also weak supply chains making the health sector be awash with counterfeit and stolen drugs, over 30 percent of drugs in Kenya were at one time found to be counterfeits according to the country’s Pharmacy and Poisons Board.
Coupled with unpleasant experiences and inconsistent care, they decided to introduce community level care or “health kiosks”, equipped with a nurse clinical officer, and a community health worker to give required care to the community.
They took to kiosks because they can use a minimum amount of space and can even be set up in slums next to the users rather than them commuting.
The kiosks are paperless as they use electronic patient management systems to gather and illustrate patient health records, use health workers to support patients.
Access Afya also uses SMS to strengthen their patient-kiosk relationships, do follow-ups, use SMS to improve their own operational efficiency, collect data and send targeted messages to groups, such as nutrition tips to new mothers or pregnant women.