Set up in 2012, Access Afya is a chain of clinics providing affordable healthcare in Nairobi’s informal settlements (i.e. slum areas). As of 2020, they have 12 clinics and pharmacies and have served over 50,000 patients in more than 160,000 visits.
While the COVID-19 crisis is affecting all Kenyans, it will disproportionately affect the vulnerable and poor. About 60% of Nairobi’s residents live in informal settlements, where traditional prevention methods like social distancing and handwashing are difficult, due to the density in population and lack of sanitation infrastructure. These residents are also the most economically vulnerable and are less likely to have access to nearby and affordable healthcare.
Access Afya is offering ongoing healthcare, including treatment of chronic conditions, medical emergencies, and triaging and referring patients with COVID-19 symptoms. In parallel, Access Afya is offering telemedicine for remote consulting of patients, helping direct them to the right place of care, and minimizing overcrowding of hospitals and further infection. Through their online learning platform Access Afya offers training to health workers in the communities, to provide ongoing guidelines and COVID-19 information and updates. Finally, the organisation is rolling out a remote chronic condition platform, supporting 2,000 high risk patients from their homes to treat chronic conditions such as hyper-tension and diabetes.
Optimizer Foundation is looking forward to supporting Access Afya in their critical work in the COVID-19 crisis.