Mobiles for Quality Improvement Pilot in Uganda

Posted by jamesbt on Dec 02, 2011
Mobiles for Quality Improvement Pilot in Uganda data sheet 1464 Views
Pamela Riley and James BonTempo
Publication Date: 
Nov 2011
Publication Type: 
Report/White paper

USAID‘s Strengthening Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) project seeks to increase the role of the private sector in the sustainable provision and use of quality family planning/reproductive health and other health products and services. One of the areas of technical focus of the SHOPS project is to identify, deploy, and scale up promising uses of mobile technologies to improve health outcomes. Many developing countries have a severe shortage of health providers, and many of the providers who are working have only limited access to up-to-date clinical protocols, or face-to-face trainings. Mobile phones offer an innovative channel through which to provide cost-effective approaches for clinical training and support for improving quality of care.

SHOPS‘ partners Abt Associates, Jhpiego, and Marie Stopes International (MSI), collaborated in a mobile learning and performance support pilot called Mobiles for Quality Improvement (m4QI) conducted in Uganda during the period September 2010–August 2011. The goal of m4QI was to demonstrate the potential for positive behavioral change in service delivery by reinforcing face-to-face induction training lessons provided to Marie Stopes staff. Research supports the theory that spaced reinforcement of training combined with testing can significantly improve long-term knowledge retention and facilitate behavioral change.

The objectives of m4QI were to develop and test a technology-supported approach to performance improvement including processes for identifying performance gaps in adherence to clinical protocols, a platform to manage and automate the delivery and receipt of text message reminders and quizzes to address the gaps, and production of actionable data to improve effectiveness of supportive supervision and follow-up. To support scalability and replicability, the pilot platform was designed for users of low-end phones, and those without Internet access.