Public funding for healthcare is grossly insufficient and many small private clinics serving much of the population struggle to meet demand and finance badly needed upgrades and facility expansion.
Godswill Medical Centre located in Nyalenda informal settlement, Kisumu City is a small private clinic offering health care services to the underserved population drawn from Milimani and Nyalenda estates.
Since its existence in 2001 the facility has been providing medical services mainly to clients who pay out of pocket.
When it opened its doors the facility offered only curative services. After partnering with KMET in the Medical Credit Fund program they have been able to introduce a number of services among them- youth friendly services, immunization, laboratory care, admission of maternity cases. The centre also provides outpatient services, minor procedures and cervical cancer screening.
Before joining the program the facility only offered basic health care services. Inadequate equipment, poor waste management and improper patient data management characterized the facility.
With time the facility got a new face lift. They enrolled into MCF and accessed 2.5 million shillings loan. This facilitated the purchase of several medical equipment and expansion activities at the centre.
The Medical Credit Fund has a set of standards to rate clinics as the initial step is providing a process for them to improve the quality of care they provide. It also provides a technical assistance program around business skills to provide training on the job, to make sure they have audited financial statements.
This loan helped them move from two rooms to a spacious facility adding a maternity wing, Director’s Office, waiting lounge and consultation room.
It has also benefited from several SafeCare training leading to its graduation from Level 1 to Level 2 during 2014 certification survey.
This means the facility has made step towards institutionalizing the provision of quality healthcare, improved staff attitude through team work.
The gradual expansion and provision of quality services gives it the chance to attain a centre of excellence certification in this new certification phase.
“We are helping these clinics build a financial track record showing they have borrowed money and repaid it, and that helps individual clinics,” explains Medical Credit Fund Managing Director Monique Dolfing-Vogelenzang
He furthers adds, “But we hope to reach a tipping point where this market of small clinics, which are providing so much of the health care in Africa, becomes interesting for banks.”