Kenya

In Kenya, there’s just one doctor for every 5,000 people—far less than the World Health Organization’s recommended ratio of one doctor for every 1,000 people.

Providing Critical Health Services through our Learning Sites

As a result, families often lack access to essential health services. This is especially dangerous for vulnerable populations, including pregnant mothers and young children, since fewer than 62 percent of births happen at health facilities and 52 out of every 1,000 Kenyan children die before their fifth birthdays.

Counties Map- Where we work in Kenya.

Counties Map- Where we work in Kenya.

 

Since 2015, Living Goods has worked closely with Kenya’s Ministry of Health (MOH) and county-level governments to strengthen the health system by recruiting, training, and supporting a network of community health workers (CHWs), known locally as Community Health Volunteers (CHVs). Living Goods currently operates a Learning Site in Busia County which serves as an exemplar county. It serves as a showcase of what’s possible through community health when using DESC and provides opportunities to test, rapidly improve, and adapt our approach in specific contexts.

By providing education and counseling support on nutrition, water and sanitation, the integrated treatment of malaria, diarrhea, and pneumonia, family planning, supporting immunization counseling and referrals, and the health of pregnant women and mothers, Living Goods pays special attention to the child’s first 1,000 days of life. This is a unique and critical period that establishes a child’s foundation for optimal health, growth, and mental development.

We are growing rapidly, and plan to support at least 7,500 CHVs serving more than 6 million people by 2021. To achieve our vision, we provide technical assistance and support for community health programming in close partnership the with national and decentralized county-level governments. As a result of our direct implementation and technical assistance to government in strategy support, digital health technology, performance management, and financing, we enabled 1 million Kenyans to live healthier lives in 2018.

Partnering with governments to deliver community health

Beyond the learning site in Kenya, we work to support the government to create an enabling environment that will strengthen community health services more broadly by developing supportive policies, guidelines and financial frameworks . The data Living Goods-supported CHWs collect in the Smart Health app is compatible with the government’s District Health Information Software 2, an open-source software platform for reporting, analysis, and dissemination of data for various national health programs. We have partnered with the government in the development, interoperability and management of  a national electronic Community Health System (eCHIS) modeled on the Smart Health App.

We also engage in advocacy to support financing and operationalizing Kenya’s community health strategy to improve health outcomes, reduce health systems costs, and mitigate the socioeconomic impact of having a high disease burden. The data we generate also helps the Ministry of Health’s Division of Family Health gather country-level evidence to raise awareness of the potential of community health and drive positive returns on investment in health care.

Living Goods also provides messaging and registration support for flagship government health care initiatives, including the Linda Mama (Protect a Mother) basic and free maternity services program.

In 2018, we ramped up our collaboration with government partners by increasing support to the MOH to achieve community health priorities through direct technical assistance and capacity building as well as increasing our participation in Technical Working Groups (TWGs) and government advisory committees, leading to several achievements, including:

  • Supporting the development of a community health investment case. Living Goods played a fundamental role in helping to develop an investment case for community health which the Kenyan Ministry of Health’s Community Health TWG has now ratified. Using the Living Goods approach for its model, the study showed that investments in community health have a 9.4-fold return on investment—stemming from the increased productivity and reduced disease burden that these investments enable. The study looked at costs across all levels of the community health system—not only at CHW- and facility-based levels.
  • Advocacy for both local- and national-level policymakers and donors around our findings in our counties of operations, which has contributed to the development of a community health bill in Kisii and Kisumu Counties, a community health policy in Kakamega County, and a request from Kiambu County to support the development of their community health bill. We are also assisting Busia County to craft the structure for Ojaamong Care, a health care initiative led by the governor, with specific input around community health.
  • Government Co – financing partnership pioneered between Kenya’s Isiolo  and Kisumu Counties as means of driving sustainability.  These efforts have increased government ownership over financing and operationalization of effective community health programs while scaling up to provide 100% of CHWs in these Counties with DESC (digitized, equipped, supervised and compensated) enabled services. 

Government Relations & Advocacy in Kenya

Learn more about how we’re partnering with the Kenyan government to develop policies, budgets and operational frameworks to support effective community health programs.

Learn More

Supporting Universal Health Coverage in Kenya

Universal Health Coverage (UHC) is part of the government’s Big Four Agenda, which former President Uhuru Kenyatta launched to drive economic and social growth. As one of just two organizations with NHIF registration agent status in Kenya, Living Goods is partnering with the government to register households in Isiolo County.

Under the UHC pilot initiative, which will benefit an estimated 40,000 households in Isiolo, Living Goods is also working in partnership with county governments to establish the best ways to deliver primary health services to nomadic populations – one of the most vulnerable populations in Kenya. The initiative is part of a plan to reach 100 percent of the population by leveraging private sector investments and alternative financing, health budget allocations, and digital health technology to ensure the availability of medicines and medical equipment.

As part of the government-led UHC committee, Living Goods also contributes technical expertise and community health know-how at the macro level. We also support the government’s technical working groups on community health, malaria, family planning, and maternal, newborn, and child health, which contribute to policy processes at the national and county levels. In addition, Living Goods supports various counties to develop community health policies as well as other strategic plans and health legislation.

A Living Goods-supported community health worker in Kenya conducts a sick child assessment


Other Strategic Partnerships

Living Goods’ strategic partnerships in Kenya extend beyond the national and local government to key international players. Living Goods is well-positioned to scale up our work in Kenya through innovative linkages with partners like Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, a public-private partnership committed to saving children’s lives and improving people’s health by increasing equitable use of vaccines in lower-income countries, due in large part to our support from The TED Audacious Project.

In Kenya, Living Goods also partners with USAID’s Development Innovation Ventures (DIV) and, as a sub-recipient to FHI 360 through the Afya Uzazi project and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, among others, to deepen and broaden our impact and influence in the delivery of community health services.

Kenya Leadership

Thomas Opiyo Onyango

Country Director, Kenya

Thomas joined Living Goods as Country Director Kenya in June 2018 and is responsible for driving and executing country-level strategy, team development and representing the organization with key stakeholders. He describes himself as dynamic global health leader and has close to two decades of experience in healthcare. Before joining Living Goods, Thomas built his career in the pharmaceutical world with progressive leadership responsibilities across Africa with Merck and Novartis. His current focus is to effectively implement the new multiyear strategy and specifically enhance Government partnership to drive national impact that leverages digital technology. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Biochemistry & Master’s in Business Administration from Strathmore University.

Caroline Kahora – Githii

Deputy Country Director/ Director Program Delivery

Caroline Kahora- Githii holds more than 15 years’ experience in designing, implementing, and monitoring strategic initiatives to targeted audiences with the aim of driving impact and improved outcomes. As the Deputy Country Director/ Director Program Delivery for Kenya, she is responsible for overseeing the implementation of LG’s strategy and the attainment of core impact KPIs. She has worked across different sectors with global and regionally renowned organizations and brands, among them; Novartis, Nation Media Group, Nestle, Sanofi & GSK. Caroline has an MBA (Marketing) and a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from the University of Nairobi and Jomo Kenyatta University, respectively. She is also a Certified Public Accountant.

Dr. David Ochieng Oluoch

Director Partnerships, Advocacy and Communications

Dr. Oluoch’s experience encompasses 13 years in increasingly responsible managerial roles in National and County Government Departments of health. In his most recent position, he served as a County Director of Health Services-Kakamega County, where he was the overall technical lead of all health services in the county. He has significant experience in health systems strengthening and program management. He is resourceful, detail oriented and a meticulous planner with a high level organizational acumen. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Nairobi, a Master’s of Science degree in Applied Epidemiology from Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology and is completing an MPH in Monitoring and Evaluation from Kenyatta University.

Evelyne Wekesa

Senior Manager, Technology Operations

Evelyne Wekesa joined Living Goods on 1st February 2021 as a Senior Manager, Technology Operations. She is responsible for establishing, planning and administering the overall policies and goals for the IT department in Kenya as well as overseeing all technology projects, operations and manage the country’s IT department. Evelyne Wekesa joins us from Five Forty Aviation Ltd (FLY540) & East African Safaris Air Express Ltd where she held the role of an ICT Manager for over 10 years. She was responsible for System and Network Administration, Network Security, Data Security, General ICT Technical Support and ICT Project Management for both companies. She brings on board a wealth of experience in Hardware and Software Engineering, Review of Security Policy and Controls, Project Management, Budgeting and Technology Analysis. She likes jogging, travelling, and passionate about improvement of WASH facilities in the rural areas.

Kenya Technical Advisory Board

Mr. Isaiah Okoth

Kenya Technical Advisory Board & CEO Africa Biosystems

Isaiah is a respected business leader and entrepreneur with over 30 years working experience across a variety of sectors including information technology, broadcasting, telecommunications, healthcare, mobile applications and logistics in Europe, Middle East and Africa. He is also the immediate former Country Director Pharm Access. While at PharmAccess, he led the strategy development and adoption of financially sustainable UHC models in Kenya through digital transformation. He also pioneered successful implementation of Africa’s first large scale medical equipment leasing project covering 98 public hospitals across 47 counties in Kenya while at GE Health Care East Africa. He is a founder member of Kenya Healthcare Federation (KHF). Isaiah has an MBA from Warwick Business School.

Dr. Josea Rono

Kenya Technical Advisory Board & Managing Partner E&K Consulting

Dr. Rono is the Managing Partner at E&K Consulting Firm – a leading advisory and investment firm providing turnkey solutions in the Healthcare, Finance and Technology sectors in Africa. He is also an entrepreneur and a recognized thought leader in healthcare business, health financing, global health & international development. He has advised on healthcare transactions (mergers and acquisitions), developed strategies for healthcare businesses, and advised several healthcare programs in Africa & Europe. He earned his Ph.D. from Karolinska Institute in Sweden and his Bachelor of Pharmacy Degree from the University of Nairobi. He is an alumnus of the Leadership & Management in Health Program of the University of Washington, USA. He holds an Adjunct Faculty Position at Strathmore Business School and is a fellow of the Swedish Institute Management Program (SIMP)

 

Dr. Salim Hussein,

Kenya Technical Advisory Board & Head of Primary Health Department, MoH

Dr. Salim works at the Ministry of Health Kenya, where he is in charge of policy, guidelines, and standards for primary health, and oversees the Primary Health Based Information system and the implementation of the monitoring & evaluation plan. Prior to this, he was Head of the Division of Community Health. He had also previously served as Deputy Head of the Division of Health Promotion in the Ministry of Health. As Deputy Head, he coordinated and supervised preventive services in the government, NGOs, and private health facilities in Marsabit. He has also previously served as the Medical Officer of Health in Marsabit.

Ms. Mildred Akumu

Kenya Technical Advisory Board & Community Health Promoter

Mildred is a passionate community health promoter with 7 years’ experience in Community Health Work. Currently, Mildred serves 160 Households with a population of 1015 communities in Moding Town A, Teso North Sub County, Malaba Branch. She is well versed in Community health, having received extensive training in Maternal to Child Care transmission, Tuberculosis Prevention, Nutrition and Malaria prevention among many others.

Thomas Opiyo Onyango

Country Director, Kenya

Thomas joined Living Goods as Country Director Kenya in June 2018 and is responsible for driving and executing country-level strategy, team development and representing the organization with key stakeholders. He describes himself as dynamic global health leader and has close to two decades of experience in healthcare. Before joining Living Goods, Thomas built his career in the pharmaceutical world with progressive leadership responsibilities across Africa with Merck and Novartis. His current focus is to effectively implement the new multiyear strategy and specifically enhance Government partnership to drive national impact that leverages digital technology. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Biochemistry & Master’s in Business Administration from Strathmore University.

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How peer mentorship enhances supervision of community health promoters in Isiolo

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Living Goods works in partnership with governments to recruit, train, mobilize, and manage the performance of community health workers who serve the communities they live in. Supervision is crucial to monitor the quality of services provided, offer technical support, and collect information from the CHWs.


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32 Mandera Road
Kileleshwa, Nairobi
Tel: +254 728 630 936
Mail to: P.O. Box 30261-0010
Nairobi, Kenya

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