There is a Russian proverb, “trust, but verify” that guides everything we do in Kenya. Since the beginning of the year as we prepared to launch our ultrasound imaging services I was shocked to calculate how much time I was spending pursuing reliable information. Two-thirds of the day was chasing information, trying to reconcile it and then validating it.
Context is critical
In the midst of our launch preparation, I participated at South by Southwest (SXSW) Health and Wellness, where I moderated the panel, “Value-Based Care (VBC) from Sweden to Brazil”. The goal of VBC is to consistently deliver the highest quality health outcomes at the lowest possible cost. In the US and at panelist institutions, Albert Einstein Jewish Hospital (Brazil) and Karolinska University Hospital (Sweden), technology and data analysis are vital to successfully implementing and delivering VBC. In the informal communities we work, health records are likely to be paper-based and data capture happens as an excel spreadsheet. While we are still guided by the same principles and desired outcomes, the context of the challenges is vastly different.
The key to VBC is stability and predictability; creating it and ensuring it. For ReaMedica Health, stability and predictability comes from partnerships and it started with the partnership we have with the Johnson & Johnson Corporate Citizenship Trust (Trust). One of the most overlooked factors of effective partnerships is patience. Rarely do plans transpire as envisioned. ReaMedica Healthcare, a Trust Accelerator grantee, received its Kenya company registration in January 2018, but had experienced only previously disastrous launch attempts in 2017. However, we had what most start-ups do not, the luxury of time. The Trust provided us with feedback and encouragement, but most importantly gave us the support and leeway to reevaluate and iterate our service model based on what we learned.