M-Tiba is a mobile-based health wallet that went live in Kenya in 2016. It has increasingly been influencing Kenya’s healthcare space ever since. Based on the M-Pesa platform, the application has managed to garner a wide audience because of increased digitization and connectivity in Kenya.
Developed by PharmaAccess Group, CarePay, and Safaricom, M-Tiba provides users with the ability to save, receive and send funds so that they can access healthcare at reduced costs. This supports families and individuals alike and helps them manage their medical finances better.
With more than 300 medical institutions on the app, mobile wallets are now being used by millions of people to access healthcare and it has changed how Kenyans access medical services in the country. The NHIF (National Insurance Hospital Fund) is also an M-Tiba partner and has helped to provide medical insurance to households.
How has M-Tiba changed healthcare in Kenya?
1. Transforming Customer Experiences
Customer feedback from M-Tiba shows that customers value the control they get from initiating treatments in real-time and understanding entitlements without having to rely on third parties to help them answer questions. This is even truer in healthcare insurance, where there are many different people involved in every transaction.
2. Meeting the demand for more Mobile-Based Healthcare Services
More than 90% of the people in the country say that they’d like to see more mobile-based healthcare services. These days, consumers prefer to receive medical information on their mobile phones.
With M-Tiba, people can save money collectively or individually for their children and their own health. Employers can even now make direct deposits to a user’s mobile wallet. The sender knows that the funds will exclusively be used to settle healthcare bills.
Furthermore, healthcare providers can now get their payments digitally, without radically reducing transaction costs. The M-Tiba platform collects all medical and healthcare information digitally. Doctors can then use this information to make better decisions and it can also help them improve their overall services by attracting financing.
Payers, like governments and donors, can now reach vulnerable costs easily and at reduced costs. Even the people that reside in slums. For example, digital insurance or vouchers can be sent to a mother’s phone directly for child vaccinations, pregnancy support, and so on.
Former Safaricom CEO, The Late Bob Collymore, once said that a trip to the clinic for many Kenyans can help lead to a great financial burden. Some of these hefty burdens can have knock-off effects on individuals trying to hold down a regular job or those who need to sell some of their stuff in order to settle medical bills.
This can prove to be a huge burden in households that have low incomes, with young children and mothers being particularly vulnerable.
M-Tiba tries to alleviate some of the problems that many households face, and it looks like it’s succeeding at doing just that.