EASE Healthcare, a full-service pay-per-scan programme for hospitals, clinics and diagnostic centres and initiated by the African Asset Finance Company (AAFC) for quality diagnostic equipment has been launched in Accra.
The event which saw the installation of a CT Scanner at the FOCOS Orthopedic Hospital in Accra marked the introduction of Equipment-as-a-Service (EASE) in Ghana.
EASE Ghana aims to address the pressing issue of inadequate and non-functional medical equipment, which poses a significant barrier to quality healthcare in Ghana. Through the innovative pay-per-use model, EASE purchases the necessary equipment and places it directly in health providers’ facilities. The generated cash flows from equipment usage cover the payment for its use, eliminating the need for customers to rely on equity or bank loans.
At the launch, the Managing Director of EASE Ghana, Dr Kanyinsola Oyeyinka who is also the Vice President, Healthcare, AAFC, said through the pay-per-use model, customers could get access to quality equipment without having to draw on shareholders’ money, or without having to take loans.
“EASE will purchase equipment needed by our customer – a CT scanner or an MRI scanner for example – and will place it in our customer’s facility for an agreed contract period. In that time, through our pay-per-use model, the customer will use the cash flows generated by the equipment to pay for its use.
“EASE does not require collateral from our customers and our model enables equipment cost to be recorded as operating expenditure (OPEX) rather than capital expenditure (CAPEX). We provide a commercially sustainable alternative for organisations looking to optimise resources or avoid costly financing alternatives,” she explained.
She explained that the success of EASE is built on strong partnerships with renowned Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) such as Siemens Healthineers, GE, and Fuji. These partnerships ensure that customers receive top-tier equipment tailored to their specific needs.
Dr Oyeyinka added that they knew majority of people sought healthcare at public facilities and so EASE Ghana had already started conversations with the Ministries of Health and Finance to roll out an EASE service which will allow public sector hospitals to gain access to modern medical equipment, without the significant capital expense required for outright purchase.
She also mentioned that apart from CT and MRI scanners, the company also provided mammography machines, and intends to purchase X-rays and ultrasound machines in the near future, and had plans to expand into other sectors like ICT and agriculture.
Mr Frans VanSchaik, CEO of AAFC, said the AAFC plans to install $75 million worth of equipment in Ghana in an economically sustainable way.
He said costs of the equipment could be lower if exemptions on import duties on medical equipment were reinstated.
Mr. Yoofi Grant, CEO of Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), praised EASE Ghana’s tailored solution for the African market and expressed the GIPC’s commitment to supporting the replication of this successful model across the country.
The CEO of FOCOS Orthopedic Hospital, Dr Irene Wulff, said the intervention by EASE Ghana was timely as her facility had challenges replacing its old CT Scanner.
She said they accepted to be their first client as the module reduced the huge financial burden of the hospital to secure a new machine.
She hoped that the two parties would collaborate on securing more equipment for FOCOS Orthopedic Hospital.