According to the UNFPA, about 800 women worldwide die every day from pregnancy-related causes, but most of these deaths could be prevented with access to antenatal care and information, vaccinations or timely health advice. Pregnant women and nursing mothers living in developing countries like Cameroon often delay decisions to seek healthcare. Less than 60 per cent of women in Cameroon receive the recommended amount of care during pregnancy, and the country is among the world’s top 20 countries with the highest maternal mortality rates.
GiftedMom was founded in 2015 to change this, offering pregnant women and nursing mothers access to health information and a monitoring service provided by specialists. The service is accessible to end users across multiple platforms, including USSD, SMS, web and a mobile app. One of GiftedMom’s key offerings is the “Ask A Doctor” service, which provides a two-way text-based communication service accessible via SMS and an in-app chat. The start-up also works closely with 42 hospitals across eight of Cameroon’s ten regions to offer a mobile-based hospital appointment reminder solution.
GiftedMom received a grant from the GSMA Ecosystem Accelerator Innovation Fund in November 2018 to develop a personalised, remote maternal healthcare solution via mobile apps that rewards pregnant women and nursing mothers with tokens they can use to pay for healthcare. The GSMA grant has been used to test and develop two mobile apps: a natal app and a nursing app. The grant has been used to on-board users and roll out the apps. As of December 2018, 170,831 users had access to GiftedMom’s services (just over 40,000 are active users).
The Ecosystem Accelerator programme is supported by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the Australian Government, the GSMA and its members.