Can NGOs and pharmaceutical firms partner to solve global health issues?
Thursday, August 29, 2013
A few weeks ago, in a remote Rwandan village, I met a nurse who had set up her own clinic to serve the local residents. From a single, brightly decorated room, she was prescribing medicines and administering basic care that patients might otherwise have to walk 15 miles or more to reach.
It was late evening and she looked tired. A handful of patients were still waiting anxiously to be seen and my eyes were drawn to a very young child clinging to an elderly lady – probably the grandmother. The scene took me straight back to my childhood years, growing up in a Kenyan village, and I hoped this child would survive, thrive and realise her full potential for Rwanda.
Thanks to the efforts of dedicated frontline health workers affiliated to organisations such as the One Family Health Foundation, she just might. This private enterprise model enables local nurses to own and operate medical clinics, bringing basic healthcare services to rural communities across Rwanda while also enabling them to earn enough to support their families.