The development of a modular screening and treatment healthcare infrastructure programme in sub-Saharan Africa to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic is on the cards thanks to a partnership between World Bank member the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and South African-listed Imperial.
The pilot project will manufacture and deploy modular healthcare units that will provide screening, treatment and other healthcare services to Covid-19 patients. The programme’s aim is to expand services in densely populated, low-income urban areas where access to healthcare is limited. Imperial will further partner with IFC to develop additional pilots in other countries in the region, including Nigeria, Kenya and Ghana, identifying country-specific needs and approaches that can be scaled up with the assistance of private healthcare service operators and government partnerships.
The project is part of IFC’s Upstream business, an ambitious new growth strategy to address complex development challenges by supporting market innovations, early-stage project development efforts, and regulatory interventions that will unlock opportunities for private investment.
The first pilot, which launched in South Africa this month, includes five modular screening and treatment centres. They can be deployed in less than a day and have the potential to boost healthcare options and help reduce infection risk among people and their communities.
“Our Upstream work is designed to look for innovative ways to bring private sector financing to where it’s needed most,” said Adamou Labara, IFC’s country manager for South Africa.