KARACHI, 4 April 2019: Unilever Pakistan has partnered with doctHERs to implement a gender-inclusive, technology-enabled healthcare solution across rural Pakistan.
The project, titled ‘Sukh Saheli’, will use the widespread reach of Unilever’s rural retail program to deliver high-quality health and wellness services for 1 million women across rural Pakistan in 2019. Frontline health workers will mobilize underserved communities in over 4000 villages and connect them to qualified, female doctors via telemedicine, HD video-consultation and digital, diagnostic tools.
The collaboration is being supported by TRANSFORM, a joint-initiative between Unilever and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) to support business models and behaviour change interventions to deliver market-based solutions for low-income household needs.
The program brings together social enterprise agility with private sector ingenuity and commercial reach to contribute towards Pakistan’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets. Unilever has provided access to its rural retail program, called Mera Sona Goan. doctHERs will match the underutilized capacity of female doctors (working from home) to the unmet healthcare needs of rural communities.
Shazia Syed, Chairperson & CEO, Unilever Pakistan, highlighted, “I believe we must leverage the reach of Unilever’s business to positively benefit the communities we work in. With this program we will be the enablers for wellbeing, health education and inclusion for rural women across Pakistan.”
Elin Burns, the British Deputy High Commissioner, added, “It's fantastic to see a technology savvy programme, which will use the private sector's reach and UK aid money to help deliver healthcare facilities for women in Pakistan. I'm especially pleased that the UK’s Department for International Development and Unilever have come together with a Pakistani start-up company to deliver this initiative.”
Säbeen Fatima Haque, Executive Director, doctHERs, concluded by saying: “At doctHERs, we’re excited to collaborate with Unilever Pakistan to improve the lives of rural women. One of our shared objectives is to integrate corporates partners to further amplify the impact of this program.”