Using mobile technology to break access and awareness barriers in hypertension and diabetes: that is what the new ‘Tiba Yako’ program strives for. The initiative was launched recently in Nairobi, Kenya, by Boehringer Ingelheim, one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies and PharmAccess, a non-profit organization that works to improve access to quality healthcare in Africa. Tiba Yako seeks to support care for patients in Nairobi, Kiambu and Vihiga County through screening sessions, clinical care and home-based monitoring as well as digital awareness and adherence advice. The mobile phone is the linking pin in this integrated approach.
Core of the Tiba Yako program is a digital payment platform for inclusive healthcare called M-TIBA. M-TIBA, developed by PharmAccess and partners, enables people to save, send, receive and pay money for medical treatment through a mobile health wallet on their phone. The digital platform allows for a more efficient and transparent way of connecting patients, doctors and payers as it is based on a constant flow of almost real-time data. Within the Tiba Yako program, M-TIBA will now also provide access support for hypertension and diabetes care in selected clinics of the country. The program allows patients to monitor their blood pressure and blood glucose levels at their convenience at home, digitally sending the results to their doctor for review. Combined with digital awareness and self-management support through an innovative app called Afya Pap, this integrated approach aims to increase symptom recognition and treatment adherence.
The data that is collected in real time through the M-TIBA mobile wallet as well as the home monitoring guides doctors and healthcare providers in their health population management. For Payers, the real time data insights in the costs, efficiency and quality of care means an improved cost-efficiency. This could stimulate insurers to enlarge their addressable market to lower socio-economic levels than their current patient base.