Photograph — Skoll Foundation

In the last decade, technology has advanced at a rapid rate and undoubtedly influenced every sphere of human endeavour with respect to education, economy, communication, business, government, agriculture, and health. Technology has become an inseparable part of human society. 

When it comes to healthcare, the adoption of technology has led to several positive impacts. Healthcare continues to be shaped by advancement in digital health technologies leaving traditional healthcare systems and practices in the dust. With digital advancement, several services like drug purchase, telemedicine, health insurance, and medical consultation have been made easy. People can now access and enjoy these services from the comfort of wherever they are.

In terms of economic benefits, a 2020 report by Techpoint Africa reveals that Nigerian health tech startups experienced a surge in funding activities, coming second only to the financial services startups in terms of funding size and the number of deals made in 2020. “For the period in question, these (health) startups raised $32.5 million across seven deals, 404 per cent higher than the entire disclosed record ($6.3 million) for 2019. This accounted for 26.8 per cent of the total funding raised by Nigerian startups in 2020” the report indicates.

Although the health tech field still has few players for the over 200 million Nigerian population, the few key players saving lives and making healthcare accessible to Nigerians are listed below.


Kangpehealth started as a telemedicine provider that allows patients to ask doctors who never go on strike their health questions and get answers in less than 10 minutes. With its present status as an insurance company, it uses software, data science, and telemedicine to make health insurance delightful, affordable, and easier to access. Kangpe was initially launched in Nigeria but has now expanded operations to Ghana and Kenya. According to Kuti, the startup has so far onboarded 60,000 users. 

Beneficiaries can use Kangpe via SMS, mobile app, or on their website at any time of the day. Then startup is in partnership with over 1,500 hospitals across Nigeria which means customers can have access to quality healthcare almost anywhere in the country. 

Health benefits include general and specialist consultations, secondary care (eye and dental care), emergency services, surgeries, and lots more. Kangpe also offers graduated benefits; the longer a user stays on a plan, the more benefits he/she can access. The availability and limits of a user’s health benefits are determined by the health plan subscribed for.


SaferMom was founded in 2014 by Adeloye Olanrewaju. It leverages the power of cost-effective technologies to provide accessible, scalable, and affordable mobile health services to pregnant and nursing mothers through SMS and voice calls in the preferred languages of the user. The platform is easily accessible irrespective of location, type of phone (whether or not a smartphone), and language.

Its services include tracking of vaccinations, pregnancy follow-up, dispersing emergency information, educating health workers, reaching underserved communities in case of epidemic disease, and educating at-risk children. SaferMom addresses the high maternal and infant mortality crises in Nigeria. 


MOBicure, founded in 2015 by Charles Immanuel, Emmanuel Owobu, and Jephthah Chidozie, is a mobile health company that offer cost-effective health care services and solves some of the most pressing healthcare problems plaguing Nigeria and Africa using mobile technology solutions. These problems are related to sexual and reproductive health and maternal and child health. MOBicure’s products are myPaddi and the OMOMi app. 

myPaddi provides young people with access to accurate, unbiased, and youth-friendly sexual and reproductive health information while ensuring they remain anonymous, with an emphasis on the prevention and management of sexual abuse, teenage pregnancy, and STDs. The app also connects young people to trained counsellors and medical personnel.

ỌMỌMI is a health and social platform based on the WHO/UNICEF childhood survival strategies. The platform has a unique range of features that helps parents keep their children healthy by helping them to easily monitor their health. ỌMỌMI provides mothers and pregnant women with life-saving maternal and child health information, connects millions of mothers all over the world, and also grants access to doctors in real-time.


Mobidoc is a mobile wellness platform that aids doctors-patients consultations, allowing users to connect with doctors wherever they are via their mobile devices. 

Co-founded by Timi Aiyemo and Abiodun Okunola in 2016, Mobidoc allows users to post their health concerns and have verified doctors reply, users can also request one-on-one private consultations with doctors online or offline, and doctors can conveniently prescribe drugs and request laboratory tests within an easy-to-use chat interface

The application also has a special feature for doctors and medical professionals to connect and discuss health trends and share useful health information.


All-Purpose Medical Information System (APMIS) was developed by Sabaoth Technologies and founded by Simpa Dani in 2017. It is a pan-African health informatics and technology system that uses information technology to capture, store, exchange, and utilize healthcare data easily, transparently, and securely in an affordable, cost-effective manner. It’s a service that is generally referred to as “Hospital Information Management Systems”, adapted to the Nigerian context.

APMIS digitizes the internal processes of healthcare delivery organizations (hospitals, pharmacies, laboratories, and imaging centres), connects them to their clients, collaborative care partners organization, and external experts. The platform has a web and mobile app, USSD, SMS, and IVR channels as well as APIs for various stakeholders’ engagement. It currently has a database of about 9,000 patients.


Dokilink was founded in 2013 by Dr. Niyi Osamiluyi. Dokilink is a medical ecosystem that allows doctors to stay connected, seek second opinions, collaborate on medical cases, earn rewards, and influence corporate decision-makers by sharing insights. “At Dokilink, doctors can share the interesting cases they have handled with each other. This leads to a greater awareness among doctors of the treatment options available locally”, says the founder.

Dokilink is Africa’s largest online physician network with over 11,000 registered doctors. It helps consumers easily find and book appointments with specialists. The platform uses personalised and customizable calendars to allow users to schedule appointments with doctors. Once the appointment is scheduled, the slot gets “locked” and the doctor receives a notification via email and SMS.


Founded in 2015 by Adham Yehia and Chibuzo Opara, Drugstoc is a secure and interactive procurement platform that empowers healthcare providers by giving them access to safe and quality pharmaceutical products through consolidated supply chain systems.

With Drugstoc, users can discover and order medicines, thousands of pharmaceuticals, medical consumables, medical devices, and have them delivered within 24 hours. However, users of this platform are strictly doctors, medical specialists, pharmacies, hospitals, and nursing homes.


LifeBank was founded in 2016 by Temie Giwa Tubosun. It is a health startup that facilitates the transmission of blood from labs across the country to patients and doctors in hospitals.

The company mobilizes and takes inventory of all blood donations available in the country, delivers blood wherever it is needed and delivers medical supplies to Hospitals in Africa using technology and a multi-modal distribution platform. LifeBank is used by over 500 hospitals in Nigeria and Kenya.


Ubenwa was founded in 2014 by Charles Onu. The application uses skills in engineering, artificial intelligence, and medical research to make clinical-grade diagnostic tools widely accessible. 

Ubenwa leverages the audio processing and computational capabilities of smartphone devices to analyse the cries of newborns and provide a qualitative assessment of whether or not the newborn has or is at risk of asphyxia. The detection of birth asphyxia takes only 10 seconds with the Ubenwa application.


WellaHealth, founded in 2015 by Dr. Ikpeme Neto is a health tech platform that provides accessible, quality health care at a very affordable price for the whole of Africa. For as low as N450 monthly, users can get coverage for common illnesses such as malaria and typhoid, and cashback for hospital stays on the basic plan.

For the Hospicash plan which costs N700 monthly, a beneficiary enjoys all services in the basic plan and also gets ₦100,000 cashback for any hospitalisation and ₦80,000 funeral assistance paid to the next of kin in the event of unforeseen circumstances. WellaHealth has over 1,400 pharmacies in its database and its service is available in all 36 states of Nigeria.

Written by Adekunle Agbetiloye

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