Kenya’s Maisha Meds awarded $5m by USAID to help it scale

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Kenya’s Maisha Meds, a leading digital health organisation in Africa, has received US$5.25 million in scale-up stage 3 funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Development Innovation Ventures (DIV). 

Maisha Meds is a software platform for ensuring that rural pharmacists and clinicians effectively purchase quality affordable medicines and pass on subsidies to patients

The US$5.25 million in funding from DIV, disbursed over three years, will support Maisha Meds’ expansion efforts to reach people in need of affordable, high-quality malaria care across Africa through private drug shops, pharmacies, and clinics that often serve as their first — and sometimes only — point of care.

With additional support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Maisha Meds plans to expand its mobile software to 7,500 total pharmacies and clinics by the end of the grant period, delivering subsidized care to nearly a million patients in the process. 

“Frontline pharmacies provide the bulk of malaria care across many parts of Africa outside of the formal health system, and technology can play an important role in improving the quality of care that they provide,” said Dr Jessica Vernon, founder and chief executive officer of Maisha Meds. 

“We are thrilled that USAID DIV has provided additional support to scale our innovation in partnership with governments and pharmacy owners.” 

Stage 3 grants, DIV’s highest level of funding, help innovators scale up proven, cost-effective approaches to critical global challenges. Maisha Meds leverages partner funds to incentivise healthcare providers to follow best practices in malaria care, and to offer discounted testing and treatment to patients. It delivers similar support for family planning and HIV prevention.

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