Cape Town - While the public health system in South Africa buckles under the weight of people needing to use it, a quarter of a million pregnant women in the country now use personalised instant messaging from a Mxit healthcare intervention to get vital information.
Mxit Reach, which launched a newer version of its app called Babyinfo last week, had over 17 000 registrations in the last seven days, says Maru van der Merwe, head of the health division at Mxit Reach.
“Providing the information on mobiles using a platform that is cost-effective to access, allows for incredible reach.
“Over 250 000 users now access the service every month. The app provides free access to high-quality maternal health information via a mobile phone, and the service is personalised, with each subscriber receiving daily information based on their stage of pregnancy,” Van der Merwe said.
For Gugulethu resident Pozisa Apleni, mobile health interventions that assist with maternal and child healthcare have come too late. In 2009, at just 28 weeks of pregnancy, she gave birth to her daughter Sisipho. The only place she could get medical information was from the clinic, where staff told her she had high blood pressure which made her pregnancy difficult.