managed by A. Stukenberg
North Star was formed in 2006 to unite the transport sector in its response to the AIDS pandemic in southern Africa. It was established by the express distribution company TNT and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), after the success of their drop-in health clinic, or Roadside Wellness Centre, which offered information and healthcare on the Mwanza border crossing in Malawi.
In 2007, the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) joined forces with TNT and WFP to create a network of Roadside Wellness Centres along the major transport routes, targeting border crossings, ports and truck stops.
In 2008, the network was extended to east Africa and, by the end of 2009, North Star had opened 14 Wellness Centres in nine countries across eastern and southern Africa.
Also in 2009, North Star was joined by ORTEC, one of the largest providers of logistics software solutions. ORTEC had already been instrumental in designing North Star’s Corridor Medical Transfer System (COMETS) and the partnership enabled North Star to provide patients with access to their healthcare information at any Wellness Centre in the network.