Improving access to affordable quality health services in Nigeria
•MTN, CarePay leverage digital platforms to drive insurance, universal coverage
As part of efforts to significantly improve access to affordable quality healthcare in Nigeria through health insurance and ensure universal health coverage in the country by 2030, MTN Nigeria (MTNN) and health FinTech company, CarePay Nigeria have signed a partnership agreement.
FinTech is undoubtedly shaping the face of the healthcare industry. FinTech companies leverage powerful innovations blockchain, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to eliminate inefficiencies and knowledge gaps endemic to most healthcare payment plans.
According to a joint statement by the companies, the partnership will connect MTNN’s subscribers to CarePay’s digital “healthcare marketplace” and over the next few weeks, both parties will collaborate with accredited health insurers and healthcare providers to roll out a digital healthcare marketplace accessible via web and app, for distribution and administration of a wide range of retail health schemes encompassing innovative bundled health schemes as well as traditional health insurance plans.
Until now, only less than five per cent of Nigerians are on any form of health insurance as over 90 per cent still pay-out-of pocket for medical services.
It has been shown that many Nigerians lack awareness about the benefits and importance of health insurance coverage and the distribution of health insurance products in Nigeria is inefficient and costly, which leads to millions of Nigerians, mostly those within the informal sector, having no health coverage whatsoever – relying mostly on cash payments at point of care, consequently delaying access to care, or resorting to poor quality substitutes due to lack of resources. Furthermore, millions of Nigerians are pushed into poverty each year due to catastrophic healthcare expenditure.”
According to the statement, the partnership will leverage CarePay’s health benefits management platform, which is already widely used by over five million users and over 4,000 healthcare providers in Nigeria and Kenya, and MTNN’s “last mile” capabilities as a leading mobile network operator, to achieve improved awareness and efficient distribution of health insurance products to all Nigerians, and effective administration of health schemes by healthcare providers and health insurers.
Executive Chairman, CarePay Nigeria, Amaechi Ndili, said: “We consider this important partnership as fundamental to improving Nigeria’s health indices by improving access to affordable quality healthcare for all Nigerians.
With the convergence of various technologies including mobile telephony, cloud, Internet, data and AI, it is inevitable that these convergences will work to the benefit of the entire healthcare ecosystem. MTNN’s strong brand and reach combined with CarePay’s proven healthcare technology provides the perfect, trust-based platform that allows seamless transactions between patients, healthcare providers and health insurers.”
Speaking about the partnership, Chief Enterprise Business Officer, MTN Nigeria Plc., Lynda Saint-Nwafor, said: “It gives us so much joy to make quality healthcare affordable and accessible to millions of Nigerians through this partnership. By simply dialing a short code, our customers can now access a plethora of health services. Also, stakeholders within the healthcare ecosystem can extend their services across the country, in an affordable and efficient manner. This is indeed a great leap forward.”
Founded in 2015 in Kenya and incorporated in Nigeria in 2018, CarePay provides a proprietary digital “health marketplace”, accessible via web and app, for distribution and administration of a wide range of retail health schemes encompassing innovative bundled health schemes as well as traditional health insurance plans. Furthermore, CarePay provides a health benefits management platform, which allows seamless data and payment, flows between healthcare payers (insurers, Health Maintenance Organisations/HMOs and corporates), healthcare providers and consumers.
The CarePay platform improves the efficiency and transparency of health benefits utilization and payments enabling health insurers to grow into new market segments, and for healthcare providers to receive their payments promptly. Based on mobile technology the CarePay platform allows consumers to view and access their contracted benefits 24/7 without delay, dispute or additional payments at accredited healthcare providers such as clinics, hospitals, pharmacies, laboratory service points etc. The platform currently connects over five million subscribers; 4,000 healthcare providers and 21 payers across Kenya and Nigeria.
MTN Nigeria is one of Africa’s largest providers of communications services, connecting over 71.5 million people in communities across the country with each other and the world. Guided by a vision to lead the delivery of a bold new digital world, MTN Nigeria’s leadership position in coverage, capacity, and innovation has remained constant, since its launch in 2001. MTN Nigeria is part of the MTN Group – a leading emerging market operator, connecting more than 250 million subscribers in 21 countries in Africa and the Middle East. To learn more about MTN Nigeria and its various initiatives, visit www.mtnonline.com