SFH is South Africa’s leading non-profit, non-governmental provider of health products, services and communications and the country’s leading social marketing organization. SFH was founded in 1992 as a condom social marketing organization and since then has distributed more than a billion condoms.
Also since that time, SFH has greatly expanded the portfolio of products and services it provides to include male condoms, female condoms, lubricant, HIV counseling and testing, CD4 counts, tuberculosis diagnosis and voluntary medical male circumcision. All of these programs are supported by behavior change communications, marketing and training.
People We Serve
SFH estimates that in 2015, its products and services helped avert 4,797,954 DALYs, including, by health area:
- 4,612,257 HIV DALYs
- 185,697 FP DALYs
SFH’s family planning programs also provided 1,704,666 couple-years of protection.
These statistics include the impact of sales and distribution of condoms by PSI/South Africa, PSI’s regional commercial entity in Southern Africa.
SFH’s health services fall under the New Start franchise network, which brings SFH and other local NGOs together to provide high-quality HIV counseling and testing, voluntary medical male circumcision and health communications services.
New Start services are offered to individuals, communities, partner organizations and in workplaces across South Africa. We do this at fixed sites and mobile facilities that are easily accessible around the country.
New Start Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision
SFH seeks to provide high-quality, cost-effective voluntary medical male circumcision services to South African men. SFH and its partners are creating informed demand for medical male circumcision and increasing access to safe medical male circumcision services for adolescents and men. Our communication also targets women, parents and community leaders, in order to create a supportive environment for the men who want to get circumcised.
New Start Health Communications
SFH is dedicated to achieving positive health changes by disseminating tailored messages to its target audiences. Health communication combines commercial marketing techniques to position products and services with messages that improve knowledge and reinforce healthy behaviors.
SFH uses both branded and non-branded health communication campaigns. Branded campaigns focus on promoting and creating demand for products, such as male and female condoms, or services such as HCT. Generic campaigns address risk perception, stigma and discrimination, and unhealthy social norms.
SFH’s condom brands
SFH is a distributor of the Government of South Africa’s Choice condoms as part of its Public Sector Distribution program. Public Sector Distribution is an initiative between SFH and the National Department of Health (NDOH). This close partnership is designed to ensure the successful distribution and accessibility of the NDOH’s Choice condom brand in order to achieve a positive health impact. SFH assists the NDOH and its provincial Sexually Transmitted Infections Coordinators to improve the quality of its distribution by building the capacity of local NGOs.
The Lovers Plus brand has attained consistent growth since its launch in 1993, primarily as a result of the application of successful marketing and advertising strategies. Lovers Plus is positioned as a fun, affordable, high-quality condom for adults who have high self-esteem, are ambitious and stylish. The price point has also assisted in positioning the brand as a quality product in the consumers’ mind. Lovers Plus is available in three variants: smooth; colored and flavored; and ribbed and studded. The extended Lovers Plus range provides diversity for consumers and greater brand exposure at retail purchase points.
The successful Trust brand was launched in 2001 to reach sexually active young adults in the lower income groups who want maximum protection. Trust products are made to the same high-quality specifications as Lovers Plus. The lower price increases affordability and encourages use among consumers who are unable to pay for more expensive alternatives. The Trust range is available in a smooth and studded for enhanced sexual pleasure.
- South African Government: National Department of Health
- South African companies (SABCOHA, South African Breweries, Amalgamated Beverage Industries, MTN, UTI)
- Local NGOs: CHAPS, Careworks, AIDS Foundation, Brother’s for Life, Soul City
- Franchise Partners: Thathenda, PHRU, Mosamaria, TIPHC
- Expanding Access to HIV Self-Testing: A Market Development Approach
PSI envisions a healthy market for HIVST to be one that is supported by multiple buyers and suppliers and that delivers on the 5As (Availability, Assured Quality, Appropriate Design, Awareness, and Affordability) to achieve public health goals. Realizing this vision for the HIVST market will require consideration of two key markets- public and private sectors. While HIV testing has traditionally been driven by the public sector, HIVST opens up the possibility of utilizing private sector pharmacies to expand and extend the reach of testing.
- HIV Testing as a Critical Entry Point to a Range of Services: Results From New Start Sites in Four Sub-Districts in South Africa
125,531 New Start HTS client referral records from October 2014 to April 2016 from four sub districts were analyzed to determine rates of completed referrals. Overall, 5 % (5793/ 125531) of all HTS clients were diagnosed HIV-positive with 62% (3589) of these being female. Of the positives, 87% (5054) accepted referrals for treatment and care services and 59% (2971) of the acceptors completed referrals.
- Safety and Efficacy of the PrePex Male Circumcision Device: Results From Pilot Implementation Studies in Mozambique, South Africa, and Zambia
This paper describes the results of pilot implementation studies conducted in Mozambique, South Africa, and Zambia to assess the safety of male circumcision procedures conducted by nurses and clinical officers using the PrePex device.
- Using Research to Inform the Development of Social Marketing Campaigns for HIV Self-Testing in Kenya and South Africa
The aim of this abstract is to describe how recent research in Kenya and South Africa may inform the design of social marketing campaigns to introduce oral HIV self-testing in these countries and elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa. An HIV self-test kit allows individuals to test themselves using an oral swab, at a time and location convenient to them, and provides the results with in minutes.
- The Greatest Gift: Improving Couple HIV Testing Rates in South Africa
In South Africa, only 41% of the estimated 6.4 million people living with HIV know their status. In support of the National Counselling and Testing strategy, PSI’s affiliate, Society for Family Health, launched a campaign to encourage couples to get tested together.
- AEA 2014: Serving the Poor and Sustaining Condom Markets – An Evaluation of Six African Countries
The Total Market Approach is a system in which all sectors – public, social marketing, and commercial – work together to deliver health choices for all population segments. The goal is to ensure that the poorest communities receive free products, those with slightly greater resources benefit from partially subsidized products, and those with a greater ability to pay purchase products from the commercial sector. The objective of this evaluation is to determine if actions taken by all three market sectors over the last five to seven years have increased condom use in an equitable and sustainable way in six African countries.
- How to Use the Inner Condom
Animated video on how to use the female condom or inner condom. Brought to you by Lovers+ and PSI/South Africa.
- Total Market Approach: South Africa
This case study describes the market for male condoms in South Africa, and the roles of the public, social marketing, and commercial sectors in the market.
- Total Market Approach in Six African countries
The Total Market Approach (TMA) is a system in which all sectors – public, subsidized and commercial – work together to deliver health choices for all population segments. In 2013, PSI completed six TMA case studies describing the condom markets in Botswana, Lesotho, Mali, South Africa, Swaziland and Uganda. These case studies also propose a set of recommendations for improving the effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability of condom markets.
- Lovers Plus Condoms Radio Ad – Aussie Open
In January 2014 when this radio spot ran. news headlines were full of the Australian heat-wave and how it is affecting the players' ability on the court during the Australian Open. This provided the perfect platform to create a tactical radio advertisement that aired on South African radio during the Australian Open--starting you on the tennis court, then taking you to the bedroom.