In many rural areas of Ghana, a ringing bell is the traditional way that itinerant sales agents announce their arrival in a village. More and more, those bells are announcing the arrival of the entrepreneurial women from the HealthKeepers Network who are promoting health while also making a living, with the motto “prevention is better than cure.” And they are forging a new way of using the private sector to deliver health and hygiene to rural areas often overlooked by traditional global health programs.
How M-Afya Kiosks hopes to bring healthcare to rural communities’ doorsteps in Kenya
Health programs around the world deal with the question: how do you get patients to visit a clinic when, due to travel distance and wait times, it frequently requires them to give up a full day’s pay that they desperately need? The obvious solution would be to build more clinics closer to patients’ homes; however, this is hardly feasible in rural areas where there isn’t enough money or manpower to create clinics in everyone town.
A start and stop approach to expanding the basket of services available to patients
During the opening session of the 2011 Social Franchising Conference for Health in Mombasa, Karl Hofmann, the president of Population Services International, argued that the integration of more services should be one of the key steps forward for health franchises in the in the near future. However, this can be difficult due to equipment and human resource constraints, as well as government restrictions on the scope of services that clinics or health workers of a certain level are allowed to offer.
Emily Mbotela opened the St. Hillarias Clinic in 2000 in the Migadini community of Mombasa, Kenya to provide basic primary care and maternity services. Then, in 2009, Tunza came calling. Tunza, a fractional franchise implemented by Population Services International (PSI), offers standardized and quality-assured family planning and reproductive health services (FP/RH) through 258 outlets across Kenya.
A marriage of national health insurance and social franchise networks would offer a new vision for health systems in developing countries
Those of you who manage clinical social franchises…imagine for a moment a world where: You don’t have to rely completely on donor funding. Decisions about your service offerings are made based on the needs of your communities rather than the special interests of donors. The poor coming to your franchisee clinics can just as easily afford services as their slightly better off neighbors.
Small, unaffiliated franchise networks must continually innovate to deliver high-quality health care with an eye toward future expansion
The majority of well-documented social franchises are operated by large coordinating organizations like PSI and MSI that give small, fragmented providers access to great benefits: professional training, branded marketing materials, subsidized equipment, and access to professional advice.
Smaller franchise networks, on the other hand are unable to reap the benefits of these networks to quickly scale up, lower margins, and implement best management practices.
Catastrophic healthcare costs push 100 million people below the poverty line every year – think the entire population of the Philippines – and many more delay or forgo essential care because of an inability to pay.
Aiming to reduce financial barriers to care, networks of franchised clinics have begun employing demand-side financing, giving patients greater “purchasing power”, to extend care to the poor. Vouchers are one such tool.
5 Tips for busy clinic managers balancing quality assurance and high patient loads
Your clinic is filling up with women who look increasingly frustrated as wait times inch up. Mobile phones trill and children fuss. You hear murmurs that the clinic down the road – run by a popular quack, or untrained medical provider – is treating patients more quickly despite a continually heavy client load that rivals your own. Do you:
a) Rush patients through with little counseling or attention to their concerns. You need to make sure you can pay your bills this month and there’s no way you’re turning people away.
b) Assume re-using needles once won’t do much harm.
Bringing together stakeholders and establishing new partnerships in health innovation
Here in Indonesia, implementers, funders, policy makers, and researchers from the private sectors, NGOs, and the Government, have been working towards finding effective solutions to improve our under-performing health market. Many projects improving health services for vulnerable populations remain undocumented. A few months back, CHMI's hub at MercyCorps hosted a roundtable to instigate an exchange of innovative ideas and facilitate the creation of partnerships for the next generation of health market innovations.
Making an impact with social franchising in Asia's second poorest state, where 80% of health transactions take place in the private sector
In 2010, the Population Services International (PSI) program, Sun Quality Health (SQH), and its sister network of village health workers, Sun Primary Health, performed more than 2.1 million client consultations in Myanmar.
We are building the Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI) because we believe that the poor in developing countries deserve high quality health care without having to pay so much that they go deeper into poverty. Improving the performance of...
Editor’s Note: Starting this month, we will begin presenting cross-sections of the database on the CHMI Blog to underscore trends our programs database is uncovering in countries where the private sector delivers the majority of health care....
Informal providers, like ‘the poor’, have historically proven to be a largely elusive population within health and development. Confounding neat categorisation within the already blurry boundaries of the ‘private sector’, informal providers are...
The Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI) blog features news about promising new programs, innovative collaborations, relevant resource articles, and editorial pieces authored by members of the CHMI community. Want to suggest a topic or write a guest blog? Email rreis at resultsfordevelopment.org.
The Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI) promotes programs, policies and practices that make quality health care delivered by private organizations affordable and accessible to the world’s poor. Operated through a global network of partners since 2010, CHMI is managed by the Results for Development Institute. CHMI is funded by the Department for International Development (DFID), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation.