Access Bank, Scidar Partner To Tackle Health Smes Financing Challenges

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access bank scidar partner to tackle health smes financing challenges
Access Bank, SCIDaR Partner To Tackle Health SMEs Financing Challenges

Access Bank, one of the leading commercial banks in Nigeria, has partnered with the Solina Centre for International Development and Research (SCIDaR) , a prominent non-profit organization spearheading impactful health interventions across Africa to tackle financing challenges faced by over 200,000 health Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.

This collaboration, anchored by the Promoting Accreditation for Community Health Services (PACS) project, aims to bolster the supply chain, enhance productivity, and fortify the economic resilience of SMEs within the health sector, particularly Community Pharmacists (CPs) and Patent Proprietary Medicine Vendors (PPMVs) across Nigeria.

SCIDaR's Access to Finance Specialist Mark Akpan noted that through this collaboration, SCIDaR will strengthen the capacity of health SMEs to beinvestment-readyy through the provision of technical support services including entrepreneurship and financial management training in addition to business development services for a sustained relationship between the health providers and Access bank.

Through this collaboration, Access Bank and SCIDaR will address the challenges associated with lending to healthcare SMEs, leveraging Access Bank's tailored financial products and services to enhance o their expansion.

Among these offerings are products designed to cater to the credit requirements of health SMEs, while the Access Closa product empowers health SMEs to act as bank agents in underserved communities, thereby increasing their income and financial resilience.

At the MoU signing event at SCIDaR's headquarters in Abuja, Dr. Uchenna Igbokwe, CEO of SCIDaR, said, "Funding is critical for Nigeria's health system. Insufficient funding has strained our health infrastructure, resulting in subpar performance on health metrics. This partnership with Access Bank is timely as it aligns with the government's vision for the health sector and has the potential to strengthen health value chains and support our country's GDP contribution."

Igbokwe further elaborated on SCIDaR's increasing focus on access to finance and financial inclusion within the health sector, driven by the significant unmet needs and the pivotal role of finance in achieving universal health coverage in Nigeria.

He outlined SCIDaR's approach, emphasizing six cardinal pillars: Research and iterative analysis, product development/adaptation, smart subsidies, financial literacy, technology integration, and sustainable partnerships.