iZola hires top medical exec to further simplify the healthcare journey for children with special needs

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iZola, an AI-powered health-tech startup specializing in solutions for parents of children with neurodivergent conditions such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), has appointed Dr. Leah Kirumbi, MBChB, M.MED OBGYN as Chief Medical Advisor, to further its growth in Kenya.

Dr. Leah Kirumbi, a pioneer and leading specialist in the care of the mother and child brings over 30 years of experience as a distinguished medical doctor specializing in maternal and children’s healthcare and policy development in East Africa. She also performed the premier in vitro fertilization (IVF) in Kenya in 2004 and has more than 40 years of experience as a mother and primary caregiver to a neurodivergent dependent.

“It should bring great comfort to families that Dr. Leah Kirumbi also comes with the dedication and empathy that can only be forged from being in the trenches faithfully everyday caring for a neurodivergent child for over four decades. Her expertise and dedication to upholding the highest standards of medical care align closely with our mission and values will play a pivotal role in ensuring that we continue to provide our customers with excellent solutions that meet their needs.” said Dr. Wamuyu Owotoki, CEO iZola.

Dr. Kirumbi has taught reproductive health to medical and postgraduate students at the University of Nairobi and Kenya Methodist University. Her primary interests include maternal and child health, and she is dedicated to empowering youth on reproductive health issues.

She served as a Principal Research Officer at KEMRI, holding several administrative positions, including Acting Director of the Centre for Clinical Research. Dr Kirumbi led the Reproductive Health Research Unit at KEMRI for ten years, working closely with the Ministry of Health on public health research related to maternal, perinatal, and neonatal health, as well as cancers of the reproductive system. A staunch advocate for maternal and child health, Dr. Kirumbi co-facilitated the development of the cervical cancer prevention program and screening curriculum implemented in several counties across Kenya.

In addition to her roles at KEMRI, Dr. Kirumbi has been active in various health committees across East, Central, and Southern Africa, as well as national reproductive health and policy committees under the Ministry of Health, Kenya. She has conducted surveillance of congenital rubella syndrome and assessed sensory impairments in newborns, aiming to enhance infant hearing and visual assessments in hospitals. Currently, she is a co-investigator in the Preterm Birth Initiative Program in Kenya.

Dr. Leah Kirumbi will join the iZola team as a valuable addition. Her expertise and dedication to upholding the highest standards of medical care align closely with iZola’s mission and values. Her expert guidance will be pivotal in ensuring iZola’s solutions adhere to the families they are called to serve.

Speaking on her appointment Dr. Kirumbi noted, “I am honored and privileged to be appointed as the Chief Medical Advisor of iZola. I am confident that in line with our strategic plan, iZola will continue to further simplify the healthcare journey for children with special needs and their caregivers through continuous product innovation that leverages AI technology.

iZola’s offerings include a digital therapeutics platform enabling parents to book online, home-based, or hybrid therapy sessions, and Xaidi, an AI-powered health assistant providing expert content for health queries in a private setting.

iZola was recently recognized by the National Diversity and Inclusion Awards & Recognition (DIAR Awards) for the inclusive development of technology in 2024. iZola was also among 6 African startups selected to participate in the first cohort of Google’s Growth Academy aimed at supporting startups that infuse AI for development in the healthcare industry

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