Project mMitra: Voice messaging and animation service to improve MCH information access in rural India
mMitra is a free mobile voice messaging and animated film service in rural India that will provide culturally appropriate comprehensive information on preventive care and simple interventions during the perinatal period. The voice messages will be in the local dialect and specific to the woman's gestational age or the age of the newborn and will be sent weekly free of cost directly to pregnant women and mothers with newborns. One mobile phone (that has animations coded into them) will also be provided to one elected, trained, trusted female leader of each village's local self help group who will ensure that the few eligible women without phones also have access to the messages weekly and that all enrolled women are shown the animations once a month. The study will use a pre post intervention design study to test the hypothesis in 400 randomly sampled pregnant women from below poverty line families or migrant that there will be an increase in knowledge and/or adoption of correct practices in eight perinatal indicators by 40% and 25% respectively. This BCC delivery mechanism based on the high mobile phone penetration in rural India will enable improved access to preventive information during the perinatal period necessary to reduce maternal and neonatal mortality. mMitra service will complement the community health workers in their activities and is an improvement on text messaging services that are inaccessible to illiterate rural women and lack the emotional content and cultural specificity of voice messages and animations.