Health Innovation: What an SMS message can unlock for healthier women and babies

By Global Community Impact

November 17, 2016

In honor of World Prematurity Day, today we’re following the story of one woman’s journey to have a safe pregnancy to deliver a healthy full-term baby. Meet Mariam, a 23-year-old pregnant woman from Mali, a country where 84,000 babies are born too soon every year and 9,170 children under five die due to preterm complications according to the latest country data on world prematurity. This is part two of a four-part series. Follow the whole series here

Mariam begins to feel consistent aches toward the bottom of her abdomen. However, she is unsure whether she should begin preparing for labor and traveling to her nearest clinic. Could it just be a false alarm?

Across the developing world, cell phones are more common than toilets. Health innovation and technology aim to bring vital maternal health information to mothers like Mariam when they need it most. Programs like MomConnect connect mothers to tailored health information that gives them the knowledge to make their own informed health decisions surrounding their pregnancy and childbirth. Luckily, Mariam decides to trust her instincts and heads to her local health facility.

75 percent of preterm birth-deaths could be prevented with cost effective, innovative solutions. @JNJGlobalHealth #WorldPrematurityDay

Innovative partnerships have played a major role in improving maternal and newborn health outcomes globally. A few of these include:

MORE: how community systems can come together to help moms for pre and post natal care.

every-preemie-scale

Click on the Every Preemie Scale to learn more about the status of key countries when it comes to premature birth.

 

Lead image: Moms-to-be Eunice, Evelyn, and Kgomotso receive health information via text throughout their pregnancy now that they are enrolled in South Africa’s MomConnect mobile health program.

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