Tunza Family Health Network Recognized at Health Market Innovation Awards

We are proud to share that the Tunza Family Health Network was recognized at the Health Market Innovation Awards as the 1st Runner-Up in the category of Most Innovative Health Market Innovation. The awards recognized the innovative spirit of health services throughout East Africa. “We want to give them an opportunity to share their insights on local healthcare realities, spotlight their success and salute their perseverance and continued improvement on these projects when no one was watching,” said IHPMR Chairman Dr. George Masafu.

Eligible programs were narrowed down and then scored by a panel of judges “omprised of members with many years of experience in the Healthcare sector cutting across the region in public and private sectors, policy formulations and with remarkable diverse academic qualifications.”

Here is a short summary of what the Tunza Family Health Network does, what it has accomplished to date and why it earned the special recognition.

The Tunza Family Health Network was launched in Kenya in 2008 to serve low income populations. The Tunza franchise promises friendly, quick and affordable services offered by qualified health providers. The franchise currently has a membership of 265 privately owned clinics in all of Kenyan’s eight provinces. The franchise activities are coordinated by PSI/Kenya as the franchisor.

When Tunza was established, the flagship service was family planning with a focus on the more cost-effective, long-term and reversible methods (IUDs and implants). In the last two years, the Franchisor has integrated other services into Tunza that include Cervical Cancer Screening, STI screening, HIV Counseling and Testing, Voluntary Male Medical Circumcision (VMMC), and Integrated Management of Childhood Illnesses (IMCI).

To support the private sector and complement the government’s effort in strengthening existing Private-Public Partnerships (PPP), Tunza Family Health Network expands access to quality health services.

The new integrated services started in 2011 and by March 2012, 136,884 clients were counseled for HTC with 122,243 of them agreeing to be tested for HIV. They included individual clients, pregnant mothers, couples and even infants. Out of the total number of clients that were tested, 5,919 turned positive for HIV and were referred to facilities where they could access care and treatment, most of these being public sector facilities.

During the same year, 29, 211 women were screened for cancer of the cervix at Tunza facilities. Out of these 679 had positive or suspicious results and were also referred to public sector facilities for further screening and management. Family planning services also increased dramatically, with 391,249 clients accessing a family planning method of their choice through Tunza between the period January 2011 to March 2012. A family planning voucher was launched in July 2011 to enable poor women to access FP services at a highly subsidized cost. By March 2012, 51,867 women had benefited from the scheme.

A VMMC pilot in Nyanza and the launch of the first phase of IMCI training for all Tunza franchisees, focusing on diarrhea and pneumonia case management was added in November 2011.

The Tunza franchise has a demand creation component which utilizes community based mobilizers known as Tunza Mobilizers. Tunza mobilizers work in the community raising awareness on the various health areas and make referrals for potential clients to visit the Tunza facilities or public health facilities.