On 3 November 2017, Unjani Clinics NPC (Unjani), in partnership with Johnson & Johnson, will launch a new clinic in the Mbombela Local Municipality – approximately 25kms from the capital of South Africa’s Mpumalanga Province – in a continued effort to improve access and the quality of primary healthcare available to low-income communities throughout South Africa. The Unjani Clinic Network aims to increase training and business resources to professional nurses, as well as expand access to affordable primary healthcare services, with the goal of scaling up to 70 clinics by December 2019.
Given the shortage of trained doctors in South Africa, most of the primary healthcare services in rural districts and townships are performed by skilled nurses. Unjani is committed to building capacity through extensive training and supplying business resources to professional nurses, to bridge the gap of limited responsiveness that primary healthcare clinics can provide to local communities.
“Helping people around the world live healthy lives is at the core of Johnson & Johnson’s commitment to the communities we serve. We are so proud of our partnership with Unjani – an initiative that continues to empower women and serve low-income populations by delivering solutions directly to those in need, in their communities,” says Stacy Meyer, General Manager of Johnson & Johnson Medical in South Africa.
Since inception, Unjani Clinics have provided more than 350 000 patients with several health services, including primary healthcare, vision screening, wellness services and chronic disease management. One of the goals of the collaboration between Johnson & Johnson companies and Unjani is to establish additional clinics, thereby creating additional jobs and treating up to 280 000 patients annually by 2018 through the Unjani Clinic Network.
Johnson & Johnson has also provided funding for new, state-of-the-art Sure Chill fridges for most of the Unjani Clinics. Using advanced technology, these fridges maintain a temperature of between two and eight degrees for up to five days and do not rely on electricity, so power outages do not affect the fridge temperatures, and vaccines and medicines are kept safe and effective. They are also WHO approved.
“We are extremely excited about our expansion of our Network into the Mpumalanga Province. Serving the low-income communities and focusing on the employed uninsured market is our aim,” says Lynda Toussaint, CEO of Unjani Clinics NPC. “It remains our goal to continuously nurture community health practices, as well as empower women, through our strategic partnerships. Our hope is that the Kanyamazane community embraces the principles of Unjani, and that they benefit fully from the quality, affordable and alternative services that Unjani provides.”