How do you improve health care delivery in Nigeria and Africa? Using mobile of course. This is the vision of Chukwuemeka Onyenwe, CEO and founder of Nigerian tech start-up Find-A-Med. Appsafrica.com recently caught up Onyenwe to hear about this latest award winning innovation.
Crowd sourced platform
Find-A-Med is a crowd sourced location based platform that shows people the closest hospitals, pharmacies, dental and other medical facilities around. It also stores the contact details of the centers and gives users turn by turn directions to get there. The platform stores users basic health information for first responders in case of emergency situations and users can give ratings and reviews about the centres visited. The app is available on Google and Apple stores.
Chukwuemeka Onyenwe tells Appsafrica.com, Find-A-Med is “trying to give people better informed decisions about the type and quality of health care around them, bridging the gap between medical practitioners and end users. We ultimately want to improve health care delivery in Nigeria using Mobile”.
App terrain different in Nigeria
Of course there are many challenges for any start-up. Onyenwe explains “the app terrain is different in Nigeria. I assume that most people aren’t so conscious about their health until they fall sick so users don’t go out of their way for health until it’s absolutely necessary. Since this is not an entertainment app or a game, It is expected to get that slow growth with app downloads. Also a lot of smartphone users do not know how to download apps themselves, some don’t even accounts, and a lot of people don’t want to spend their data because it is expensive. At first site users are reluctant to download the app because they do not know what it is about but when they understand the value then they do.”
App downloads critical for start-ups
Onyenwe tells Appsafrica, our app is “like a spare tire, you don’t know when you’ll need it but you should always have it. Having tried various marketing strategies, people know about the app but it hasn’t translated to downloads. He believes the best way will be pre-installing them in phones even before they are sold so that way the information is already with them. Monetisation is not yet a priority until Find A Med gets a critical mass “but I know that will be another hurdle to face when I start getting the centers to pay for the value created” he added.
Find A Med will launch a full product in the near feature and also plan to build an SMS component to reach a wider mass audience. Once the business model has been validated in Nigeria, expansion across Africa will happen.