To improve healthcare inclusion for women, leading health maintenance organisation, Avon HMO and Shecluded, a female-focused financial services provider have formed a strategic partnership to create two unique healthcare plans – Nova and Thrive.
According to the Chief Executive Officer of Avon HMO, Adesimbo Ukiri, these new plans are targeted at bridging the gap impeding women from accessing healthcare services.
“Women are at a disadvantage when it comes to accessing healthcare. The results of this range from women being cut off from being active stakeholders in their health to sad occurrences of maternal mortality, which in Nigeria, is one of the highest globally at 14%,” she said.
Atinuke Kolade, the Head of Sales, Retention and Growth at Avon HMO, echoed these sentiments by adding that: “Most women-owned SMEs are at the risk of seeing their businesses go under due to unexpected medical bills and these new plans provide an option that directly addresses their needs. Thanks to this new partnership, fewer women will be left behind.”
For Shecluded, the partnership is an opportunity to provide access to health insurance for members of the Shecluded community while accessing financial education as well. According to Ifeoma Uddoh, CEO of Shecluded, this is because women are more likely than men to require health care services throughout their lives even though they are less likely to have health insurance.
“As a mother, who has seen first-hand the benefit of having health insurance while pregnant, and in my role as the CEO of Shecluded, I am committed to increasing the number of women who have access to adequate health insurance by providing flexible payment options and educating women on its benefits.
The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic has taught us that access to quality healthcare is the first step to financial security, and I am excited to continue improving communities by helping to increase healthcare access with Avon HMO.”
Nigeria is home to an estimated population of 200 million, with women approximated to be around 99 million. However, less than 5% of the female population are subscribed to health insurance plans due to factors such as awareness, accessibility, and affordability. The collaboration between Avon HMO and Shecluded aims to reduce the gap between healthcare access and affordability, bring the country closer to achieving universal healthcare coverage.