Platform seeks to spare patients huge medical bills


Gigapp Technologies founder Emmanuel Nabuora. PHOTO | POOL

Quality healthcare always comes with a high cost. This means poor households always find it hard to pay for medication when their loved ones fall sick.

This is where a new application dubbed Afyapay, will come in handy. Through the app, individuals will now be able to access high-quality healthcare by accessing medical cover through micro-payments.

Afyapay, created by Gigapp Technologies, came up with the idea to enable individuals and families to get quality medical covers while paying at their convenience.

Gigapp Technologies founder Emmanuel Nabuora said the digital platform that enables patients to pay for and have access to quality healthcare through affordable payment options for medical insurance, is available on Google Play Store.

The platform, Mr Nabuora says, also allows a user or patient to organise and safely access healthcare records in a seamless manner.

“The health and medical insurance landscape has experienced significant changes in recent years, as more patients are now seeking better services from their providers.”

Mr Nabuora notes that this idea was as a result of a personal experience which he encountered while taking care of a loved one who was ill.

“I experienced a hard time paying for my kin's insurance and hospital fees back in my rural home. I had to run to several places to do different things that were necessary at the hospital yet all these would have been integrated into one platform,” he says.

From that experience, he realised that out-of-pocket health care payments increase the financial burden for households, especially where they have to borrow funds from financial institutions.

He says patients are now demanding “a streamlined experience” where they can “self-service” to resolve most questions, issues, or concerns which include downloading immunisation records, booking an appointment, paying their bills, or checking their account/insurance status at their convenience.

“These demands are the hallmarks of AfyaPay,” says Mr Nabuora.

AfyaPay is simply a financial solution that is bundled with unique healthcare benefits for patients, healthcare providers and society at large.

“Upon downloading the app, users or patients can easily keep track of their healthcare records, make payments, track expenditure, save money and conveniently plan for future expenses,” said the CEO adding that, “Healthcare providers are now facing tougher competitions in attracting and retaining patients who demand an experience that matches the level of customer service they expect from other consumer brands. And with innovative platforms like AfyaPay, all these concerns are taken care of.”

A patient can begin using the app immediately after downloading it and uploading the necessary information. The approval process takes a few minutes and patients can start enjoying the services after making the initial payment. Payments can be done one-off or routinely on a daily, weekly or monthly plan or a minimum of Sh20 daily.

Mr Nabuora says that they target people in the informal sector adding that most poor and vulnerable people in Kenya have limited resources to access quality and comprehensive healthcare.

According to the 2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census, there are about 19.5 million poor people in Kenya, with the pandemic worsening the number of poor people.

Kenyans at the base of the pyramid experience financial hardships due to out-of-pocket payments to meet their health needs. As a result, most Kenyans are pushed below the poverty line annually.

“Our main aim is to ensure access to affordable quality health services and reduce the out-of-pocket cost by Kenyans,” Mr Nabuora adds.

Increasing availability and access to health insurance is the most efficient in reducing financial risks associated with out-of-pocket health expenditure.

“We'll charge onboarding fees for partners to use the platform who are mainly the insurers. This is in addition to running advertisements on the application,” he added.

He noted that their target is reaching up to 500,000 people in the first six months, then two million more by the end of their second year of operation.

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