mHealth effort aims to curb high infant mortality rates in Africa

A mobile health point-of-care triage effort incorporating smartphones is helping foster quicker diagnosis of potentially deadly disease and illnesses in Malawi, Africa and helping stem the number of children who die from various illnesses such as meningitis and pneumonia which are preventable and treatable if found early and treated early.

The triage approach, launched by Action Meningitis, is focused on reducing Malawi's high infant mortality rate, states a report at BioMed Central, as it is reducing the number of children who die awaiting care given the traditional 'first-come, first-served' medical system previously used.

Currently nearly 200 healthcare workers are being trained on smartphones for the effort; 220,000 children have been provided triage attention in the past two years.

The program, which allows caregivers to assess a child for the potentially deadly disease in one minute, also helps healthcare workers focus on protocols. It also has reduced waiting times for patients at clinics.

The next goal is enhancing the effort to be adopted in the primary healthcare setting and expanding training across nearly a dozen health centers over the next three years. Article