Using Mobile Health Technology to Improve Nutrition and Early Childhood Development

In countries like India, Benin, Mozambique and Rwanda, many of the health services delivered to poor rural families come from community health volunteers or extension agents. Clinics are too far away, too crowded, or too expensive. These community level workers, however, have had only limited training, some are not literate, and the frequency and quality of supervision is poor. While many of these workers have mobile phones, few use them for their work. In this context, what can be done to improve health services and health outcomes for the estimated 42 percent of children in sub-Saharan Africa who are stunted due to chronic malnutrition? How can we help the more than 200 million children globally who will not reach their developmental potential, succeed in school or earn a good income as a result of malnutrition and lack of cognitive and social stimulation during early childhood?