About 50 kms north of Pretoria, Winterveld has welcomed a new private clinic. The clinic in Winterveld’s Ward 9 is the latest private clinic rolled out by Unjani Clinics, which CEO Lynda Toussaint has described as a “social franchise.”
“Unjani Clinics is a social franchise – the franchisor is a non-profit company, so we can generate funding for our clinics,” she is quoted as saying in a March 2014 interview with the youth news service, YouthVillage. “The franchises are the clinics themselves, the nurses approach us and we empower them because they own and operate the clinic and are able to become successful entrepreneurs into the future.”
Toussaint is quoted as saying the company hopes to roll out 90 such clinics in the next three years, generating about 300 jobs. The company already has clinics in Mpumalanga and elsewhere in Gauteng. Toussaint tells OurHealth that the decision to open a private clinic in Winterveld was taken following research and support from local leaders.
Winterveld’s Unjani Clinic provides primary health care and family planning services.
Tebogo Nyori has already become a regular patient.
“The beauty about the clinic is that it is user friendly and there are no queues,” Nyori tells OurHealth. “Even though it is (at a) distance, the service is of quality.”
Zanele Nkonyana is 24 years old and pregnant. She says she enjoys coming to the clinic, which is free from queues and medicine stock outs. She said this kind of service makes her family willing to pay the R150 consultation fee.
“There is enough medication and no queues in this clinic and the friendliness of staff keeps me coming for more consultations,” she adds. “In terms of the R150 consultation costs, my family is very much supportive and my health comes first.”
About 37,000 people call the area surrounding the latest Unjani Clinic home. The local ward has an average annual household income of about R15,000, according to the 2011 Census.
Ward 9 Councillor Sophy Sithole says the clinic may be a welcomed alternative to the queues at the nearby Kgabo Clinic.
“The queues at the nearby Kgabo Clinic are worrisome and the community supported the establishment of this type of a clinic,” she said.