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Cell phones help save the lives of mothers, infants and children
Date:11/7/2010

Nov. 13-14. In addition to a number of speakers during the plenary sessions, PMNCH and the mHealth Alliance are organizing a detailed mHealth implementation workshop bringing together expert practitioners with industry to discuss specific ways to deploy mHealth systems.

PMNCH was formed to ensure that all countries meet the UN's Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for improving the health of women and reducing the toll of infant and child deaths by 2015. Widely used, mobile technology could help less developed countries meet those goals. "I'm not saying that mobile technology is a panacea, but there's such tremendous possibility, primarily because the cell phones are already there and usage is growing so fast," says Dr. Schweitzer.

Help for meeting MDGs

The potential for the rapid spread of mobile technology suggests it will help those countries that lag behind, many of them in sub-Saharan Africa, in meeting the MDGs.

Of special concern are MDGs 4 and 5, which call for reduced child and maternal mortality. At the most recent assessment, 49 of the 68 high-burden countries had made little, if any progress toward meeting those goals.

But mHealth has the ability to support those goals by improving information and communication for mothers, providers and administrators.

The recently announced Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health identifies mHealth as a critical innovation that needs to be broadly applied to achieve the MDGs. PMNCH acted as the platform for the development of the Global Strategy, and will continue to advocate for financial and policy commitments to the Global Strategy.

The Government of Norway chairs the Innovation Working Group (IWG) of the Global Strategy. "We cannot reach the MDGs by merely continuing to do more of what we have been doing," says Tore Godal, M.D., Chairman of the IWG and Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Norway for Global Health. "The best new idea is to use mob
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Contact: Marshall Hoffman
marshall@hoffmanpr.com
703-533-3535
Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health
Source:Eurekalert

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