Kenya Cardiac Conference Rallies Key Stakeholders to Celebrate Lives Saved, Augmented Clinical Capacity
North Carolina, USA – June 23, 2017: On June 8th, Agile Global Health’s Kenya team gathered key stakeholders in Kenya’s National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) Cardiac Surgery Program from around Kenya, and the globe, for a half-day cardiac summit at Sarova Panafric Hotel in Nairobi.
The meeting, which drew more than 150 attendees, brought together cardiothoracic surgeons, cardiologists, NHIF leadership and board members, the Ministry of Health, the Kenya Medical Association (KMA), the Kenya Cardiac Society (KCS), a World Bank representative for Africa, participating hospital clinical and administrative staff, and surgery beneficiaries with executives, staff, and the original founder – a guest of honor for this special occasion – of program implementer Agile Global Health. Through presentations, patient testimonies, a moderated panel, and a press briefing, the conference conveyed the program’s progress over its first eight months of activity, and fostered open exchange among all participants on aspirations and strategies for its future.
Since October 2016, over 300 Kenyans have received NHIF-covered cardiac interventions or open-heart surgeries as part of the “NHIF @50” Cardiac Surgery Program. As acknowledged during the conference – as well as by NHIF CEO Geoffrey Mwangi in an interview on NTV’s AM Live show leading up to it – a key enabler of NHIF success has been Agile Global Health’s disciplined management focus on data capture, analysis, and continual monitoring, which has allowed the program to continuously adapt to emerging opportunities and challenges. “This conference was a critical turning point in ensuring that all stakeholders clearly understood why NHIF chose us to implement this program, and how we are making all its disparate parts function collectively, to the benefit of patients and the capacity of Kenya’s health system,” said Joyce Wambugu, Agile’s Nairobi-based Care Director. “I believe the question ‘why Agile Global Health?’ was answered that day.”
Ms. Wambugu’s conviction has been borne out by the numbers. In the weeks since the cardiac conference, we have witnessed two marked shifts: first, with growing knowledge of the program’s work and accomplishments, more Kenyan hospitals are now earnestly seeking out Agile Global Health to join this crucial initiative. And second, the program’s elevated profile since the conference has heightened public awareness, leading to a surge of new patients. “Since the publicity boon of the conference, we’ve seen our open-heart surgery volumes trending up,” said Dr. Rainer Hilgenfeld, Chief Medical Officer, “and we’re also realizing major growth among interventional and diagnostic cardiac procedures. This means that increased awareness is rapidly driving the program in the direction of more patients using it to access preventative and early-intervention care, which saves lives as well as funds.”
“We as Agile Global Health are thankful for the hard work of many that made this event possible,” said Stephen Masinde, Agile’s Kenya National Director. “We acknowledge first the NHIF and our hosting venue Sarova Panafric Hotel, as well as The Mater Hospital, The Karen Hospital, Tenwek Hospital, Gertrude’s Children’s Hospital, Nairobi Hospital, Coast Provincial General Hospital, M.P. Shah Hospital, Dr. Harun Otieno for his presentation on heart attacks in Kenya, and our moderator, Mr. Eric Latiff.”
Connect with the latest NHIF @50 Cardiac Surgery Program news, and all Agile Global Health initiatives, on our blog.
In the photograph above: Agile (operating as A&K) Global Health’s CEO Morgan Darwin, founder Wes Edens, and Chief Medical Officer Rainer Hilgenfeld (center back row) proudly stand with members of our Kenya team following the successful stakeholder summit for the NHIF @50 Cardiac Surgery Program.
In the photograph below: From left to right, Mr. Darwin, NHIF CEO Geoffrey Mwangi, and Mr. Edens joined representatives of numerous government ministries, medical societies, healthcare institutions, and patients themselves in Nairobi to celebrate the accomplishments of the cardiac program.
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