The [Institute for Health Policy, Management, and Research (IHPMR)](http://healthmarketinnovations.org/partner/institute-health-policy-manag...), CHMI’s partner in East Africa, has kicked off a new award—the Health Innovations Awards (HIA)—meant to recognize the most promising programs identified in the region that have **increased access to health services, improved quality of service delivery and or have provided financial protection to the poor and vulnerable**.
The launch of the HIA in Kenya was held on March 29 at the Fairmont Norfolk Hotel. This boosted the general HIA planning and organization process, geared towards the CHMI Gala Dinner on May 2, at the Sheraton Hotel in Kampala, Uganda. Winners will be invited to showcase their programs during the gala dinner.
The launch had over 65 participants, including: Officials from the Ministry of Health Government of Kenya, Program Implementers, Donors, Researchers and members of the Kenya Healthcare Federation (KHF). The Media fraternity played a major role in promoting HIA event publicity, as clips of the launch were featured in News Bulletin of the day by some media houses.
The keynote address was delivered by Dr. Lilian Kocholla, Director of Public Private Partnerships in the Ministry of Medical Services. She represented the Honorable Minister for Medical Services, Prof. Anyang Nyong’o, who was on official duty in Arusha -Tanzania.
In her speech, she **pledged commitment of the Government to the initiative and endorsed the move to have the Health Innovation Awards, terming it as an innovative step in itself**. The Government recognized and applauded the efforts made by private sector stakeholders in trying to make quality healthcare accessible and affordable to the vulnerable.
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In her presentation, Dr. Maureen Nafula, the Executive Director of IHPMR, described in depth the HIA process and requirements. This served as a motivation to program implementers present to be involved in the process.
Entertainment from the Sarakasi dancers who had choreographed the HIA unveiling process brought the event to a colourful climax. More interest was generated from the audience, who at the end of the launch made inquiries on how they could be part of the process.
The event to award winners will be held at the Sheraton Hotel in Kampala Uganda, at the CHMI Gala Dinner on the 2nd of May 2012 during the East Africa Healthcare Federation Conference.
More details on HIA can be accessed [here](http://www.ihpmr.org/www/). There is still time for programs to apply!