Mumbai Smiles’ one of the youngest project, Maternal and Child Health Project, designed in collaboration with ARMMAN is currently implemented in five locations across Mumbai namely Marol, Sagharsh Nagar, Powai, Vikhroli and Kanjurmarg. The Project is exclusively on pregnant and nursing women with its unusual way of reaching out to women through a mobile phone. A free Voice messaging service is on preventive care and simple interventions to reduce maternal and child mortality and morbidly directly on pregnant women’s and mother’s mobile.
This Project is a part of the global MAMA partnership (Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action) and MAMA’s flagship program in India. MAMA is a global partnership among USAID, Johnson & Johnson, the mHealth Alliance, the UN Foundation and Babycenter focused on the use of mobile based messaging to address maternal and infant mortality problems around the world.
Globally, every year over 500,000 women die of pregnancy related causes and 99 percent of these occur in developing countries. The Millennium Development Goals (MDG) of the United Nations has set the target of achieving 109 maternal deaths per lakh of live births by 2015. India as a whole and most states within it lag behind this target considerably.
India accounts for the maximum number of maternal deaths in the world — 17 per cent or nearly 50,000 of the 2.89 lakh women who died as a result of complications due to pregnancy or childbearing in 2013. While Maharashtra has achieved the Millennium Development Goals of reducing MMR below 109, Mumbai continues to have worrisome maternal deaths.
A Project like this is an ambitious one which would reach out to targeted population at the preferred time slot in the day with vital information on preventive care and interventions to reduce maternal and child mortality and morbidly. In its nascent stage, mMitra Project at Mumbai Smiles has reached out to more than 2800 women from the community by registering them for the project.