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Feb 27, 2012

MoTeCH End-of-Pilot Durbar!

On February 7, 2012, a durbar was held at the Bugsongo CHPS Zone to mark the end of the MoTeCH pilot and for the commissioning of the newly constructed nurses’ quarters at Bugsongo, which was completed with support from MoTeCH.

Invited to commemorate the occasion included the Upper East Regional Minister, Honorable Mark Woyongo, the District Chief Executive of Kassena Nankana West, Honorable Thomas Addah Dalu, the Chief, elders and musical groups from the Bugsongo community. In addition, representatives from the Ghana Health Service, the Grameen Foundation, and Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health were in attendance. Community Health Officers also joined in with the festivities.  Various speeches were given describing the MoTeCH intervention, highlighting its impact and the challenges encountered during implementation in Kassena Nankana West.  The speeches also covered topics related to expectations for an extension of the project to other part of Ghana, including Awutu Senya in the Central Region. Read more about the durbar: MoTeCH End-of-Pilot Durbar Report

MoTeCH virtual durbar:

Feb 17, 2012

MoTeCH and Allison Stone are featured in the Magazine of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH)

Ms. Allison Stone (the MoTeCH Project Manager & JHSPH alumna) and the MoTeCH project are currently featured in the recent edition of the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health Magazine. This edition focuses on the use of technology as a tool for public health, including mobile technologies (mHealth). Check out the full article here: JHSPH Alumni Dispatches- MoTeCH and Allison Stone

Feb 8, 2012

The MoTeCH source code is now available!

Interested in using the MoTeCH source code? It is now available on the GHS MoTeCH website: MoTeCH Source Code. To learn more about  implementing the MoTeCH system, including documentation notes, frequently asked questions & answers, and useful diagrams, please visit  the MoTeCH wiki page: MoTeCH wiki.

Dec 7, 2011

MoTeCH qualitative research  findings focused on health workers presented at mHealth Summit

The MoTeCH team presented a research poster displaying findings from a qualitative study conducted with community health workers (CHWs) involved with the implementation of the MoTeCH system. Key findings included that CHWs found alerts and reminders useful, although accuracy was largely dependent on uploading completeness. CHWs found the actual uploading of data as a tedious and time intensive activity. In addition, challenges related to incomplete uploading and failures to generate accurate monthly reports, caused many CHWs to perceive the simplified paper system for health information, originally conceived as an interim step for the introduction of the mobile phone-based system, to be the one of the primary benefits of MoTeCH

Check out the full poster presentation here: mHealth Summit Poster

Dec 6, 2011

Dr. Koku Awoonor-Williams presents MoTeCH at the mHealth Summit’s panel focused on Maternal & Child Health in Africa

Dr. Koku Awoonor-Williams  presented the MoTeCH project at the 2nd Annual mHealth Conference on December 5-7, 2011. This panel discussion focused on projects related to Maternal and Child Health in Africa. Dr. Awoonor-Williams provided a brief overview of the project in addition to a discussion on the major lessons learned during the implementation process of MoTeCH. To view the presentation: Awoonor-Williams Presentation, Maternal and Child Health in Africa Panel.

Dec 6, 2011

mHealth Summit – Dr. Awoonor-Williams and Allison Stone are interviewed about MoTeCH by the mHealth Reality Booth

MoTeCH’s Co-PI, Dr. Koku Awoonor-Williams, and Project Manager, Ms. Allison Stone participated in the mHealth summit’s mHealth Reality Booth while in Washington D.C. from December 5-7, 2011. The mHealth Reality Booth aimed to learn more about the challenges encountered in the design, implementation, and evaluation stages of mHealth development projects. To view other mHealth Reality Booth interviews please click here!

December 1, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #10, Talking with Mr. Kwame Bimpeh

Efficient information management is essential for effective delivery of health services. Access to health information can enable health workers to be better equipped to address the needs of their clients which can be enhanced through timely and coherent records of service indicators and patient histories. The benefit of this information is rarely available to the service providers, their patients, and frontline supervisors.  MoTeCH attempts to address this problem through developing mobile phone-based technology that supports the work of community nurses as well as health decision-making of their clientele.  Mr. Kwame Bimpeh, the head of Health Information for the Upper East Regional Health Directorate, helps explain how MoTeCH is being utilized to deal with this information access challenge. To read more about this: M C#10: Talking with Mr. Kwame Bimpeh

December 1, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #9, The Mobile Midwife Programme

As a project seeking to determine whether increased access to health information through the use of mobile phones can improve the maternal and neonatal health outcomes in Kassena Nankana West District, MoTeCH sends health education messages and personalized care reminders to pregnant women and mothers of young children.  Informative and actionable, these messages are available in local languages and can be received in either SMS or voice format.  MoTeCH clients can receive these messages on their personal phone or a phone in their household.  Also, they can call MoTeCH at anytime, cost-free, and from any phone to hear their messages as many times as they would like.  To learn more about this aspect of the MoTeCH Initiative, called “Mobile Midwife”, please click here: MC #9: The Mobile Midwife Programme

November 24, 2011

MoTeCH Simplified Registers Successfully Reviewed!

 The simplified registers, users usually confirm, are comprehensive, have detailed information and   constantly remind health workers of the continuum of care for clients!

It has been almost 2 years since the introduction of the simplified registers to the MoTeCH implementing zones (Kassena Nankana and Kassena Nankana West) of the Upper East region. In addition to being used in the Awutu Senya district where MoTeCH is replicated, the efficacy of the registers is evident in its further adoption by the GEHIP implementing districts, also in the Upper East Region.

Effective as the simplified registers have been, it was expedient that stakeholders meet to review them to ensure they are best suited for data capture at the CHPS level and to improve health documentation and reporting.

The all day meeting brought together health workers from far and near to include the head of CHIM in Ghana,  Regional Directors, District Directors, Public Health Nurses, Health Information Officers and the health workers who are directly using the registers.

Enthused about the simplified registers, participants agreed that, “if it is not registered, it is not done” and deliberated on every detail of the registers. Effective contributions came from the meeting and changes were incorporated in the next set of registers that will be used in health facilities. Even exciting was the assurance that, the simplified registers were proven worthy and would eventually be scaled up to all CHPS facilities in the country.

For a full report of the meeting: MoTeCH SR Review Meeting Report 02-15-12

November 15, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #8, The Role of the Community Health Officer

A key stakeholder in the implementation of MoTeCH is the Community Health Officer (CHO). Aside providing community-based health services, the CHO’s role in MoTeCH includes educating and enrolling clients for the project, uploading all patient-client encounters unto the MoTeCH server and tracing clients in need of care and providing services as alerted by MoTeCH. To read more about the role of the CHO in the implementation of MoTeCH, click here: MC #8: The Role of the Community Health Officer

November 15, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #7,  MoTeCH Enrollment Process

With the simplified registers fully in use at health facilities, CHPS standardization activities complete, and durbars held in each project community, the stage was set for the introduction of the MoTeCH mobile phone system.  Thus the mass registration of the MoTeCH clients into the system began in July 2010.  A MoTeCH team attended each CHPS outreach and clinic event, providing Community Health Officers support in the registering of pregnant mothers and children under five into the project sites in Kassena-Nankana West district. To read more about the start-up of the MoTeCH mobile phone system, please click here: MC #7: MoTeCH Enrollment Process

November 1, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #6, Community Introduction – The role of durbars 

After all milestones had been accomplished for the implementation of the MoTeCH project, it was necessary to inform beneficiary communities about the project.  Community durbars were held in each MoTeCH CHPS zone to inform community members of the recently-implemented simplified registers, CHPS standardization, and upcoming introduction of the MoTeCH mobile phone system.  The durbars were also used a vehicle for reinvigorating community health volunteerism, by re-introducing each community’s appointed health volunteers and emphasizing their role in promoting the health of the population.  To read more about the MoTeCH durbars and see a couple photos from the events, please click here: MC #6: Community Introduction – The role of durbars

October 25, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #5,  Setting the Stage – the Standardization of CHPS

Initial rapid assessment surveys of the two districts of the MoTeCH project, Kassena Nankana and Kassena Nankana West, indicated significant variation in the training and equipment practices within the districts’ workforces. A MoTeCH-sponsored CHPS Standardization Programme provided:

1.) In-Service Training that expanded community health worker’s knowledge-base in the areas of maternal and newborn health; and

2.) Essential Equipment Provision which focused on providing medical equipment and logistics gaps at all CHPS zones in the two districts.

To read the entire article, MC #5: Setting the Stage – the Standardization of CHPS

  October 14, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #4, Mobilizing Community Volunteers

The Community-based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) Initiative utilizes evidence-based strategies including volunteerism and community engagement to support nurses in communities with basic health care provision. The volunteer’s crucial roles provide the community stationed nurses with a conducive environment for
effective health service delivery. Volunteers mobilize community involvement
with health outreach campaigns including child welfare clinics, health education home visits, and health durbars. They identify pregnant women in their first trimesters for early antenatal services and birth delivery planning and report the occurrence of home delivery births in their communities to ensure important attention can be given to the mother and child. To enhance the capabilities and confidence of community volunteers, MoTeCH introduced training opportunities for health volunteers to strengthen their knowledge base and skills, focusing on key topics including antenatal care, postnatal care, child
health, malaria, and family planning.  To learn more about community health volunteers and MoTeCH, please click here: MC #4: Mobilizing Community Volunteers

September 15, 2011

Bruce MacLeod Featured in The Chronicle of Higher Education

MoTeCH’s own Bruce MacLeod, the architect of the MoTeCH software, has been featured in The Chronicle of Higher Education.  Congratulations Bruce!  Read the article below to learn how the idea for the MoTeCH intervention took shape, why MoTeCH is primarily a voice-messaging system, and learn a bit about Bruce’s background developing technology for health. To read the entire article, The Chronicle of Higher Education- Bruce MacLeod article.

July 11, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #3, Setting the Stage for MoTeCH: Introducing the Simplified Registers to Community Health Officers

Community health workers, prior to MoTeCH, were expected to record client encounters into over 12 different register books. Under this register system, they were required to manually produce monthly reports, a strenuous and scattered exercise that oftentimes produced inaccurate reports. MoTeCH, through introducing the use of simplified registers, has consolidated both the number of required registers (from 12 to 5 books) and simplified the design and layout. Preliminary findings have indicated that the innovated simplified registers have reduced the time spent by community health workers on data entry activities, enhanced report accuracy, and increased the time available for patient-client encounters. To read the entire article, MC #3: Introducing the Simplified Registers to Community Health Officers.

July 7, 2011

MoTeCH Calling #2, What is MoTeCH?

MoTeCH aims at building a flexible, scalable platform to support a wide variety of mobile health (mHealth) initiatives covering different contexts and geographical areas.  The project uses a low-cost GSM phone to capture, transmit, and analyze health data captured by Community Health Officers (CHOs) during client encounters. The system also provides for the delivery of automatic notifications to occur for both mothers about upcoming care events and nurses about defaulting clients. MoTeCH also provides health education to pregnant mothers, sending weekly time-specific messages, through a program known as Mobile Midwives.  MoTeCH strives to use the client data uploaded by CHOs to the MoTeCH electronic medical system, which is automatically aggregated, to generate the required monthly facility caseload reports. To read the entire article, MC#2: What is MoTeCH?

July 5, 2011

Join the MoTeCH Listserve!

Interested in staying up-to-date on the latest news and developments from the MoTeCH team? Please join the MoTeCH listserve to receive emails and alerts on the latest MoTeCH news! To sign up please complete the following: MoTeCH Listserve Sign Up Form.

– The MoTeCH Team

July 1, 2011

MoTeCH Calling, #1: Why MoTeCH

Community health workers in Ghana spend significant time on data collection and reporting activities,  exercises which provide them with little actual feedback or benefit. MoTeCH is investigating the use of mobile phone technologies in simplifying information capture and for providing a mechanism for critical communication between clients, front-line health care workers and their supervisors in the form of alerts and reminders relating to care events. To read the entire article, MC #1: Why MoTeCH?

June 20, 2011

Introducing MoTeCH Calling!

We are excited to introduce the newsletter series MoTeCH Calling! MoTeCH Calling is a series of notes discussing the development process of the MoTeCH project. Told from the perspective of health care workers, mothers enrolled in the programme, the district health management teams, and regional health administrators, MoTeCH Calling hopes to share with you the challenges, benefits, and valuable lessons that have been learned through the MoTeCH initiative.

– The MoTeCH Team

June 12, 2011

Welcome!

Welcome to the MoTeCH Blog! We hope to use the blog to share with you all the latest updates, resources, and developments from the field. Please check back again soon to learn more!

– The MoTeCH Team

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