Kenyan entrepreneur Joseph Kitonga is redefining healthcare in the U.S.

Abu Mubarik March 16, 2023
Joseph Kitonga, Founder & CEO, Vitable Health. Photo credit: Penntap

He is a health entrepreneur seeking to change the way primary care is delivered to hourly workers who lack health insurance. Joseph Kitonga is the founder of Vitable Health, a company headquartered in Woodlyn, which charges about $50 a month per employee for its services.

Vitable Health has been praised for its high quality and convenience by workers in child care, restaurants, and home care. Since its founding in 2021, the company has registered over 10,000 people in Southeastern Pennsylvania and Delaware.

“Instead of building on top of existing, broken infrastructure, we’ve redesigned the healthcare experience to put our members at the center,” said the page of the company on LinkedIn. “No waiting rooms, copays, or deductibles. Our providers, labs, and imaging come directly to you, either virtually or through our concierge in-home visits,” read another part. 

According to Forbes, Kitonga is of Kenyan origin. He migrated from Kenya to the U.S. when he was only 13 years old, and watched his parents bootstrap a home healthcare small business. He started his venture while studying at Pennsylvania State University.

In 2020, he participated in the prestigious Silicon Valley technology start-up accelerator Y Combinator, and subsequently won a fellowship from billionaire tech investor, Peter Thiel’s foundation, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. The platform also adds that the fellowship includes $100,000 over two years for entrepreneurs who dropped out of college to start a business.

His decision to become a health entrepreneur and start Vitable was influenced by the healthcare travails of employees at Hosana Home Healthcare, a Delaware County company started by his parents in 2012.

“At their small business, hourly workers made too much to qualify for Medicaid, too little to afford comprehensive health insurance, so they were stuck uninsured and overutilizing the ER,” Kitonga said. “Vitable is built to be their primary-care plan that is both affordable and accessible.”

In recent years, the company has been attracting a number of investors, owing to its approach to doing business. In 2021, it attracted a $1.6 million investment led by SoftBank’s Opportunity Fund, and received $7.2 million in venture capital to expand in October 2021. Vitable has 22 workers and uses about 50 nurse practitioners to provide much of the care. 

Kitonga recently made the prestigious Forbes 30 under 30 list; he was included in the immigrants’ category of the list alongside other entrepreneurs who moved to the country. 

Last Edited by:Annie-Flora Mills Updated: March 16, 2023


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