About Precious Kilimo

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3:54 am 3:54 am

Press release: Maisha Meds reaches 1,000 active facilities and expands to Nigeria

By |2022-05-30T03:54:35-08:00May 30th, 2022|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Network grows to 1,000 facilities to be the largest digital pharmacy network in Sub-Saharan Africa Kisumu, Kenya, May 30, 2022 – Today is a big milestone for Maisha Meds as our network hits 1,000 facilities utilizing our technology across Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria and Zambia. Over 350,000 patients walked into one of our tech enabled pharmacies in the past 30 days alone (with 2.5 million in the last year), and of these 8,300 received clinically appropriate malaria, family planning, and HIV services through our health insurance-style loyalty program. Maisha Meds is a health tech organization based in Kenya that works to improve access to quality care in the peri-urban and rural private sector through business management software and reimbursement programs for pharmacies, drug shops and clinics. The backbone of our offering is a point-of-sale pharmacy app to help our partners manage their businesses. Using the data from this digitally integrated network we design health interventions to support patients at the very bottom of the income pyramid, who typically buy what they can afford, not what they most need. In addition, we are also designing e-marketplace and credit solutions for pharmacies and clinics to help them access high quality medications at the best possible prices. The POS app is an Android-based inventory management software that works in any clinic, pharmacy or drug shop, is free to download and was designed to support offline use especially in low-internet and on $100 android tablet computers. Our approach is intentionally light touch with value derived through the networking effect of bringing thousands of small independent facilities into a larger ecosystem, while respecting their individual incentives and business requirements. Through the Maisha Meds POS App, Maisha Meds is building the digital infrastructure for universal healthcare at the last mile. We are deeply grateful to our funders for giving us the support to improve the lives of thousands, while helping small businesses and health providers run their businesses more efficiently and more profitably.  About Maisha Meds https://maishameds.org/ Maisha Meds is an organization dedicated to improving health care in Africa. We began full-time operations in 2017 and over the past few years have grown to support over 4 million patient encounters annually across Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Nigeria, and Zambia with our suite of software products.  We are building the financial and technology infrastructure to enable global health funders to pay for health outcomes at the last mile, with a focus on malaria case management (and results from a randomized controlled trial with the University of California, Berkeley due out later this year), injectable contraceptives, prenatal care, HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis, and COVID testing and vaccination. Our work is funded by USAID Development Innovation Ventures, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, Grand Challenges Canada, Pfizer, and others, and we are starting to build partnerships with multilateral global health funders, pharmaceutical companies, and national health insurance funds.  We use data from our point of sale software to design programs that leverage financial incentives to improve [...]

4:08 am 4:08 am

The Growth of Product at Maisha Meds

By |2021-11-02T04:22:22-08:00November 2nd, 2021|Uncategorized|0 Comments

A story of Product team growth and development By Caroline Gezon I moved to Kenya to join the team at Maisha Meds in October 2020, tasked with the challenge of product management and growth strategy for our Reorder e-commerce platform. The business potential and social impact vision excited me; the economic theory of pooling demand for small pharmacies and selling high quality medication at lower costs simply makes sense. Of course, reaching that vision proved to be challenging once I learned about the constraints of financing gaps and subsequent just-in-time supply chain needs at the small pharmacy ground level. It had been months since a previous part-time PM had left Maisha Meds, and almost a year since the former Head of Product had departed for medical school. Spreading those product managers thinly across our “Loyalty” behavioral incentive product and Android point of sale (POS) meant that not all teams understood what product management entailed. Product is a role at early stage startups that is too often viewed as a "could have" or "would have," to use the MOSCOW prioritization framework, given realistic constraints on funding and budget. I came to Maisha Meds from a similar role with another global health startup, where as a Product Intern I worked to build out the product function, processes, and prove that value to the executive team. A personal goal of mine over the last year has been to build internal understanding, buy-in, and value for the Product function at Maisha Meds. It has not always been a smooth journey, but the growth of our product team has been one indicator of that success. WHAT IS “PM”? Kenan, Njuguna, and Wangari review sticky notes in a research synthesis session So what really is product management, and why is it necessary? Product drives innovation at companies. It sits in the center of defining user desirability, technical feasibility, and business or program viability. On any given day, you can find a product manager in the field, testing a new feature with users and gathering feedback to inform a new product launch, on a video call leading backlog grooming with the engineering team, or gathering functional requirements from the operations team on new programs design for a new experiment looking at behavioral incentives. TEAM GROWTH One of several delicious and elaborate cakes that Kenan has made for a Maisha Meds team member The growth of the product team at Maisha Meds has been exciting to watch, as we've expanded from a team of one to a team of five within the last year, while the broader Maisha Meds team doubled in size (currently at 70 employees).  In January, Kenan was promoted from leading systems to product management, first on Loyalty and now across the point of sale (POS) application. Kenan provides thoughtful attention to detail in thinking through systems integration, and he's a fabulous chef, known for baking birthday cakes and cooking delicious Kenyan meals for coworkers. After three months working with Reorder, [...]

11:17 pm 11:17 pm

Being a woman leader in a majority female organisation

By |2021-03-08T23:09:42-08:00March 7th, 2021|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a woman leader working at a female majority company? Dorcas Masatia, the Director of Operations at Maisha Meds, shares her experience as a woman leader at such a company operating in Kenya. As the Director of Operations, Masatia leads the field operations at Maisha Meds, and has extensive experience managing complex operations for Innovations for Poverty Action and Evidence Action. Article by Precious Kilimo (Business Development Lead) with contributions from Dorcas Masatia (Director of Operations), Jessica Vernon (CEO), and Roshni Walia (Chief of Staff) A sense of belonging and purpose  “There is pride in the far we have come and the far we are going through team effort and good leadership.” Dorcas Masatia, Director of Operations Masatia was drawn to Maisha Meds because of the opportunity to serve her society through contributing to improve access to quality healthcare.  “It’s great working at Maisha Meds mainly because it’s a mission driven company geared towards ensuring the bottom of the pyramid have access to quality and affordable healthcare.” Being one of the earliest employees at Maisha Meds, she has seen the organisation grow from less than 10 employees in 2017 to 39 (22 female and 17 male) employees in 2021.  “The scope of the organisation has also grown from simply offering the Point of Sale software to now having a co-pay programme that has increased access to healthcare for patients at the bottom of the pyramid as well as partnering with quality suppliers to ensure patients have access to quality medications.”  As the company grows, the culture has developed into one of equal opportunities for all, the freedom to express oneself and be innovative, while also leaving room for a lot of collaboration across teams. Women leadership at the top “The very able team of women has proven that when united and driven by a common purpose, women are able to grow a company and greatly impact the world.” Female leadership at Maisha Meds begins at the top with both our CEO and CTO being female. Jessica Vernon, the CEO of Maisha Meds, leads the organisation towards achieving its overall mission and vision while Jenny Cheng as the CTO leads engineering for the suite of Maisha Meds products. Jessica Vernon, CEO Jenny Cheng, CTO                               Female representation at the top extends across several parts of Maisha Meds. Christine Otieno is the Director of Supply Chain, Veronica Njeri is the Director of Programs, and Roshni Walia serves as the Chief of Staff. Both Veronica and Roshni note that having women colleagues in leadership positions has created an atmosphere of mutual understanding, trust and teamwork.     “Leveraging on inclusivity, a prominent mindset in women, there is a general trust culture created by the women leaders I have found at Maisha Meds. This environment enhances a shared collaborative space that enhances our teamwork.” (Veronica Njeri) “Working at a [...]

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