Osinbajo Canvasses Private Investment in Health Sector
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Private investors have been urged to consider putting their money in the health sector as the federal government strives to attain Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 3 and 9 adopted by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in 2015.
This call was made by the Vice President of Nigeria, Mr Yemi Osinbajo (SAN), on Wednesday during the state-of-the-art Modular Healthcare Facility (MHF) launch by Alpha Mead Healthcare Management Services at Gbagada General Hospital, Gbagada, Lagos.
The MHF is a customised, mobility-enhanced, prefabricated portacabin with detachable modules equipped with state-of-the-art clinical and diagnostic equipment designed to take quality healthcare services to the doorstep of all Nigerians.
Represented by the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Mrs Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, Mr Osinbajo said private investment in health would help Nigeria attain the two vital SDGs.
“I want to commend Alpha Mead Healthcare Management Service Limited for this initiative. I applaud the company for harnessing its scientific and technological expertise to make this solution available for use in the country. It will go a long way in supporting our journey towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” he said.
Professor Osinbajo added that Alpha Mead’s MHF has “appropriately captured SDG Goal 9, which aims at building resilient infrastructure, promote industrialisation, and foster innovations across sectors including health, innovation, infrastructure, and new skill in technology development.”
The MHF, he further noted, will help drive SDG 3 and one of its targets of achieving universal health coverage in low and medium-income countries.
The Vice President explained that universal health coverage “is designed to ensure that everyone has access to key promotive, preventive, curative, and habilitative health services of good quality at an affordable cost without the risk of financial hardship linked to paying for healthcare services.”
Professor Osinbajo urged other private sector players to emulate Alpha Mead because its MHF would complement the government’s efforts at transforming medical diagnostics and reduce the barriers to access to quality healthcare in Nigeria.
Also speaking, Group Chairman, Alpha Mead Group, Mr Mutiu Sunmonu, explained that the launch of the MHF confirms that the company’s brand promise of ‘we care’ is not just a platitude but a living commitment that expresses its essence as an organisation.
He added that access to quality healthcare is the greatest challenge in Nigeria’s health sector, but the Modular Healthcare Facility would help address this.
According to Mr Sunmonu, “a product that accelerates access, addresses manpower shortages, leverages technology and can be rolled out on a massive scale is what our healthcare sector needs, and we are happy to be leading this innovation.”
He added that for Alpha Mead, “the MHF is more than a healthcare facility. It is also an entrepreneurial package capable of serving both social and economic purposes by creating jobs and business opportunities for Small and Medium Scale Enterprise, professional healthcare workers, and support staff.”
The Group Managing Director, Alpha Mead Group, Engineer Femi Akintunde, who did a product presentation, disclosed that the MHF is equipped with a Radiology Information System, Picture Archiving Communication System (RISPACS), Enterprise Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and Telehealth infrastructure for real-time reporting of investigation and remote consultation.
The Ogun State Commissioner for Health, Dr Tomi Coker, who delivered a goodwill message, ex-Lagos State Commissioner, Dr Jide Idris and several other players in the health and technology sectors attended the launch.
Helium Gets $30m to Spread Healthcare Finance Offering
By Adedapo Adesanya
Helium Health, a Nigerian healthtech company, has raised a fresh $30 million to expand the reach of its fintech product, HeliumCredit.
The company, which provides Software-as-a-service (SaaS) tools, financing, and insights to healthcare providers and public health organizations, will use the latest injection to drive growth in some of its expanding verticals.
The round was led by AXA IM Alts with participation from Capria Ventures, Angaza Capital, Anne Wojcicki (Founder of 23&Me), and Flatworld Partners. Existing investors Global Ventures, Tencent, Ohara Pharmaceuticals, LCY Group, WTI, and AAIC also participated in the round.
This is the first of its kind since the healthtech company secured a $10 million Series A in 2020 and 18 months following a rare Africa-GCC deal involving UAE-based healthcare provider-patient interaction platform Meddy.
“We believe in a future where good healthcare is a reality for all Africans, not just the few. We are deeply committed to supporting both private healthcare providers and public health stakeholders with finance, technology, and data to achieve that vision. We are delighted to have such seasoned healthcare investors accompany us on our journey,” Mr Adegoke Olubisi, the CEO and co-founder of the company, said.
In this growth phase, Helium Health also looks to deepen its collaborations within the public health and global health communities, another core focus of its work. Global health funders contribute about 15 per cent of total health expenditure in sub-Saharan Africa and play a critical role in tackling the continent’s leading causes of death, such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, and maternal and child mortality.
On the part of the investors, Mr Jonathan Dean, Head of Impact Investing at AXA IM Alts, said, “We are delighted to invest, through AXA IM Alts’ impact investing strategies, in Helium Health’s mission of providing digital solutions to improve the quality and efficacy of health services in resource-constrained environments, whilst also directly equipping health sector enterprises with affordable financial services.”
“This investment directly contributes to AXA IM Alts’ broader impact goals of improving financial inclusion and reducing inequalities globally,” he added.
“We have seen first-hand the evolution of Helium Health over the years. The leadership team deeply understands Africa’s healthcare sector and knows how to build products that meet its nuanced needs,” added Mr Noor Sweid, Managing Partner, Global Ventures.
Launched in 2020, HeliumCredit has extended more than $3.5 million in credit to over 200 healthcare facilities in Nigeria, including hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, and diagnostics centres, which have used the loans to purchase medical equipment, medications in bulk and expand their locations. With easier access to credit, healthcare providers can increase patient retention, increase revenues, and improve the quality of care.
Helium Health will also launch HeliumCredit in Kenya this year, increasing its lending portfolio to 1,000 healthcare facilities by 2024 in partnership with the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC).
Helium Health aims to be the leading technology partner for public health entities by supporting and implementing their programs and strategies in Africa. Helium Health has received funding from organizations such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and MSD for Mothers to execute projects under their maternal health program strategies in the past year.
The company will also continue to scale its SaaS suite for healthcare providers through HeliumOS, its Electronic Medical Records and Hospital Management Information System (EMR/HMIS) solution. HeliumOS helps health facilities of any size or specialty run their operations more efficiently, increase revenues, and improve healthcare delivery.
HealthXP Unveils App to Revolutionise Healthcare Delivery in Africa
By Adedapo Adesanya
HealthXP Limited, a healthcare technology firm, has introduced a groundbreaking application, myhealthXP, aimed at addressing the healthcare delivery crisis in Africa.
With numerous challenges facing the sector, including brain drain, poor infrastructure, lack of funding, inadequate access to healthcare facilities, and the mismanagement of health records, myhealthXP offers a seamless and innovative approach to healthcare delivery in Africa.
myhealthXP is an on-demand healthcare collaboration platform designed to connect individuals with highly qualified and verified doctors, laboratories, pharmacies, and caregivers. It facilitates efficient and convenient access to quality medical attention regardless of location. Through myhealthXP, Africans can access quality and affordable healthcare at their fingertips.
During the launch event held on May 25, the Keynote Speaker, Mr Eromosele Omomhenle, a Board Member of HealthXP Limited, highlighted the gaps in healthcare delivery and emphasized the role of technology as the future solution.
He emphasized the significant number of medical doctors who have migrated to the United Kingdom, thereby leaving a scarcity of licensed practitioners in Africa.
Similarly, Dr Daniel Omomhenle, a co-founder at HealthXP, expressed the potential for African medical professionals based abroad to leverage myhealthXP in giving back to their society by contributing their expertise to the African healthcare system.
HealthXP’s co-founder, Dr Kayode Ogunleye, stated, “Our aim is to use technology to bridge the gaps in the healthcare sector across Africa. We empower patients to take control of their health records, fostering collaboration between healthcare providers and patients.
“This is the path towards recovery and improved health for our nation. With technology, Africa will not miss the IT revolution, and myhealthXP aims to be at the forefront of this progress, benefiting Nigerians and Africa as a whole.”
Describing the innovation as the “democratization of healthcare,” Mr Seni Williams, Non-Executive Director, NPL Nigeria, emphasized the importance of patients’ control over their health records.
He highlighted the significance of myhealthXP in enabling patients to have total control of their medical information and share it securely with professionals worldwide.
On his part, Mr Israel Ayodele, Head of Product at HealthXP Limited, assured users of the app’s robust security measures and data protection protocols. “We prioritize the security and privacy of your data through end-to-end encryption, strong authentication, secure data storage, regulatory compliance, and user-controlled data sharing. Our commitment to continuously enhance our security measures ensures a safe and trusted environment for your information.”
Closing the event, Ms Comfort Olatunde, Director of Product Marketing, shared her personal experience with Nigeria’s healthcare system, underscoring the need for improved solutions.
She emphasized the user-friendliness of the myhealthXP app, which is now available for iOS users on the Apple Store and Android users on the Google Play Store in select African countries, as well as the US and UK. Comfort reassured users that HealthXP had implemented a thorough verification process for healthcare practitioners, ensuring their qualifications are up to standard. Additionally, plans are underway to expand myhealthXP into other countries across Africa.
AI Can Help Transform African Blood Donations—BetaLife CEO
By Adedapo Adesanya
The rise of artificial intelligence and its revolutionary impact on African business, society, and culture led discussions on the final day (June 2) of GITEX Africa 2023 in Morocco.
Experts from across the globe gathered to debate and advance the transformational new tech that’s now the focal point of worldwide debate.
Speaking at the event, Mr Mubarak Ayanniyi, the 21-year-old founder and CEO of BetaLife, a Nigerian health startup, noted that AI-powered health-tech solutions are helping to transform African blood donations.
BetaLife is a cloud-based AI-powered platform that connects hospitals and blood banks using advanced algorithms, ensuring the efficient flow of lifesaving blood products to needy patients.
The company’s CEO said the greatest advantage of Betalife is its ability to analyse copious data via an AI-powered algorithm that accurately predicts when, where, and in what amounts of blood donations are required, thereby directing resources and allocating donations when needed, ultimately saving countless lives.
“BetaLife has revolutionised how blood donations are managed in Africa”, said Mr Ayanniyi. “Instead of relying on manual processes, hospitals and blood banks are now using BetaLife to predict when and where blood donations are needed most.
“This has led to more efficient distribution of blood products, reducing waste and ensuring that those who need it most receive the lifesaving treatment they require,” he added.
Speaking on another panel discussion, Mr Simon See, the Global Head of Nvidia AI Technology Centre in Singapore, said with the right investments and policies, AI can help Africa to achieve its development goals and improve the lives of its people.
“In Africa, the demand for AI skills is expected to grow by 36 per cent between 2020 and 2025,” said Mr See, whose American-headquartered Nvidia makes specialist AI chips, with a market value that briefly surpassed $1 trillion this week.
“This growth is driven by the continent’s young population and its investments in start-ups and innovation. The growth of AI is creating new jobs in Africa, as companies look to hire experts to help them develop and implement AI-powered products and services.”
GITEX Africa, which concludes today in the Red City of Marrakech, gathered thousands of attendees from 120 countries over its three-day run, all looking to network and develop meaningful business connections with the 900 exhibiting companies and start-ups across 10 halls and 45,000sqm of exhibition expanse.
AI and its far-reaching multisectoral impact were also evident on the exhibition floor, with many exhibitors showcasing how the AI boom is turbocharging waves of innovation across industries, from education and agriculture to transport, retail, energy, or logistics.
Latest News on Business Post
- Italy Pledges €1.4m Investment to Preserve Kanyaka Island in Moçambique June 6, 2023
- Stanbic IBTC Strongly Advocates Financial Literacy Among Children June 6, 2023
- Forces of Change in the Creative Industries – Going Beyond Tech June 6, 2023
- Saudi Additional Cut Lifts Brent, WTI Crude Prices June 6, 2023
- NGX Records First Loss Under Tinubu as Investors Liquidate Stocks for Cash June 6, 2023
- Subsidy Removal: Court Stops Proposed Nationwide Strike by NLC, TUC June 5, 2023
- Momentum Gathers for Second Adire Lagos Experience June 5, 2023
- GTS Drilling, Others Lauded for Supporting Children’s Heart Foundation June 5, 2023
- Karekezi Makes Case for Nigeria’s Agro Insurance Industry June 5, 2023
- Foreign Airlines’ Unrepatriated $812m in Nigeria Worries IATA June 5, 2023