British International Investment


Using technology to make healthcare more affordable and accessible in Africa

Making medicine supply chains more efficient by using technology and data.


About one third of the world’s population lacks access to essential medicines. In some parts of Africa, that figure rises to nearly half the population. On top of that, about 30 per cent of drugs in Africa are counterfeit, so access to quality-assured medication is even harder. To achieve Sustainable Development Goal 3 – to ensure healthy lives and promote the wellbeing of all people of all ages – we need to tackle these issues, so patients can get the medicines they need at affordable prices.

The pharmaceutical market in Africa is large and fragmented. Many pharmacies face challenges such as sprawling supply chains, low order volumes and high prices. For patients this frequently results in drugs being out of stock, and high prices even when they are available.

One of the solutions is to make medicine supply chains more efficient by using technology and data. A company called mPharma in Ghana is aiming to do just that over the next few years. Its goal is to make quality healthcare affordable and accessible to everyone in Africa, by halving costs while also reducing the risk of counterfeit medicines.

Working with community pharmacies, it analyses data to combine patient demand figures for medicines more effectively, to help make the supply chain more efficient. This allows it to distribute pharmaceuticals to the mass market at a significantly lower cost than competitors.

mPharma is bringing more affordable and safer medicines to almost 1.5 million patients every year across four countries in Africa.

1.5 million

patients served every year

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