GHS grabs Smartphone app on maternal death prevention

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) frontline health workers, Community Health Nurses, have been introduced to a new Smartphone app called “CHN on the Go” to help avert maternal, newborn and child deaths in rural areas.

Community Health Nurses (CHN) on the GO, health officials explained, is Smartphone application that creatively uses technology to improve social support, career development and reach out to more health workers stationed in the countryside where many facilities are often lacking.

Dr Boateng Boakye, Special Assistant to the Director-General of Ghana Health Service, said the invention of the app sought to offer quality health service to newly born babies, pregnant women, and children under five.

He said the system would help to improve communication, enhance feedback, and give motivation to the nurses.

Dr Boakye noted that the new arrangement was expected to address myriad of problems facing the rural nurse, including resource constraints, lack of adequate facilities, supplies, lack of professional development opportunities and little support.

Rural nurses face a wide range of barriers, ranging from trekking long distances to visit patients being isolated in remote areas, and have limited access to important health information.

The app is, therefore, meant to provide CHNs with decision-making support in overcoming challenges of delivering life-saving care, and shore up care-giving to clients.

It will also support mobile nurses to improve their knowledge with the use of visual aids to engage patients.

Nurses will use the app to immunize and manage team workloads as well as share pictures and questions with supervisors for troubleshooting around care delivery, and allow supervisors to monitor CHNs’ progress closely.

The Grameen Foundation, developers of the app, said it was launched as a pilot project in July 2014, and being tried in five districts in the Volta and Greater-Accra regions, reaching out to 363 CHNs and their supervisors.

The project objective is to help the government to build a more motivated frontline health workforce, resulting in improved quality of maternal and child health care in rural communities through a mobile technology innovation.

The app helps to increase health knowledge of CHNs, provides learning opportunities anywhere, anytime with mobile courses, improves CHNs access to health information for improved client engagement and allows immediate diagnostic support, health officials said. GNA

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