The Mico Chalinze Lugoba Dispensary is a clinic in the coastal region of Tanzania and was brought forward by the Association of Private Health Facilities in Tanzania (APHFTA). With the loan, it will be able to start renovations and purchase medical equipment to expand its services.
The Mico Chalinze Lugoba Dispensary is a basic health center in the Bagamoyo District, an area known for its high commercial activity and growing population. The dispensary has been operating since 2010 and sees over 10,000 patients per year. It has considerable status in the area and is known for having reasonable prices, short waiting times, reliable availability of drugs and a doctor with a good reputation.
Dr. Mbwambo, the clinic’s doctor and sole proprietor, is a laboratory technologist with more than 10 years of experience. Even though he works fulltime at the dispensary, Dr. Mbwambo also has three pharmacies in Chalinze and Dar es Salaam. He is highly motivated to expand and develop the dispensary, and is already in the final stages of finishing a second dispensary.
The Mico Chalinze Lugoba Dispensary is a relatively large facility, with 16 staff members. The clinic has three observation rooms with 10 beds, a dispensing area, a consultation room, a dressing and injection room, a laboratory, a laundry area, a storage area, two toilets and a reception area. On average, the clinic receives 28 patient visits per day. About 80% of the patients are low and middle income earners, and the most common diseases treated are malaria, typhoid fever, venereal disease, urinary tract infections and bronchopneumonia.
Financing quality improvement
APHFTA, the umbrella organization of the (for profit) private health sector in Tanzania, is dedicated to improving the quality of care and services in the private health sector. In its capacity as a technical assistance partner to Medical Credit Fund, it has recruited 178 clinics (up to end of October 2013) which have received USD 1,304,648 in loans.
Monica Godfrey, business advisor at APHFTA, explains how Medical Credit Fund has made a difference to the healthcare sector in Tanzania. ‘In my experience, the Medical Credit Fund program has been extremely helpful to our facilities. Before, private healthcare facilities faced enormous challenges securing capital from banks and other financial institutions. Now, they have access to small loans with which they can improve the quality of their healthcare services. Also, the technical support helps them to advance their clinic businesswise.’
Due to the fact that this dispensary has enough collateral and that its financial statements are in place, Dr. Mbwambo was able to apply directly for a Medium loan. The Tsh 20 million (USD 12,200) loan will be used to renovate the facility and to purchase medical equipment such as a hemoglobin analyzer, a urine analyzer and an ultrasound machine.
There are two private dispensaries and one government dispensary within a 5 km radius. These clinics do not yet offer diagnostic services such as ultra sound scanning or urine analysis. By expanding his services to include not only out-patient and laboratory services but also diagnostic services, Dr. Mbwambo expects to increase his competitive advantage and attract more patients.