KENYA— M-TIBA and the Medical Credit Fund (MCF) have established a strategic cooperation with MYDAWA to introduce a distinctive financing option.
The Medical Credit Fund (MCF), founded in 2009 as part of PharmAccess, serves as the sole not-for-profit fund dedicated to funding health SMEs in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Currently operating in six countries—Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Uganda—the MCF has provided over 10,000 loans, totaling more than EUR 175 million, to over 2,000 consumers. Remarkably, it boasts an impressive 97% loan repayment record.
This agreement aims to streamline the procurement of essential medical supplies and pharmaceuticals for pharmacies, clinics, specialists, hospitals, caretakers, and other healthcare facilities.
In this collaborative effort, healthcare providers gain access to a credit facility of up to KES 40 million, made available by the Medical Credit Fund (MCF) and accessed through M-TIBA’s Cash Advance service.
This working capital loan program is designed to offer financial support to small and medium-sized firms in Kenya’s healthcare industry.
M-TIBA cash advances can be utilized for various purposes, including inventory management, pharmacy replenishment, business expansion, salary repayment, rent repayment, technological adoption, digital transformation, staff recruiting, marketing, patient outreach, and equipment acquisition and upgrades.
Notably, this facility requires no collateral, is simple to apply for via cell phone, provides quick access to funds, and features automated repayments via M-PESA.
This financial assistance facilitates the procurement of medical products from MYDAWA, Kenya’s leading online pharmacy and pharmaceutical wholesaler, ensuring a consistent and uninterrupted supply of vital commodities such as pharmaceuticals and consumables.
The significance of this partnership is underscored by the fact that healthcare providers can address challenges related to immediate operating capital constraints through the Cash Advance service.
Pieter Prickaerts, Managing Director of M-TIBA, emphasized that this collaboration enables healthcare providers to deliver exceptional patient care while ensuring access to high-quality pharmaceuticals and necessary medical supplies, even in the face of acute working capital constraints.
Furthermore, this collaboration reduces the need for healthcare providers to refer patients to other clinics due to shortages of medicine and consumables.
Priscilla Muhiu, MyDAWA Country Manager, highlighted that this collaboration enables healthcare providers to meet the diverse demands of their patients and consumers while ensuring quality and consistency.
The MCF-funded Cash Advance solution has granted loans totaling KES 11 billion to over 750 healthcare facilities.
This innovative strategy establishes loan limits and digitally provides credit to private healthcare providers using data from M-PESA transactions, simplifying the financial aspects of healthcare and enabling better services for communities.
M-TIBA, inspired by the success of M-PESA in the finance industry, strives to ensure health inclusion for all Kenyans.
By combining healthcare and financial information, M-TIBA’s simplified automation contributes not only to effective healthcare delivery but also to the quick development of medical claims, streamlining the billing process for both patients and healthcare providers in a transparent manner.
This financing will support projects like the Marwa Program, a significant UHC effort initiated in August by the Kisumu County Government and supported by the PharmAccess foundation.
Through the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), the Marwa initiative has expanded healthcare coverage to 122,000 people from 44,000 low-income households.
The M-TIBA platform has played a crucial role in the digital enrollment and maintenance of this large-scale program, providing convenient access to affordable healthcare in Kisumu.
The Marwa program exemplifies the impact that the public and private sectors can have on increasing healthcare access.