INFORM

PROJECT AT A GLANCE

Funded by: Grand Challenges Canada
Co-funded by: Innovgreen Disable Foundation Limited, Hong Kong
Principal investigator:  Vivek Vajaratkar
Mentor and consultant: Dr Gauri Divan
Project secretary: Marypinky Rosario
Senior researcher: Percy Cardozo
Collaborators/Co-Investigators:
  • Multi-Agency International Training and Support (MAITS), UK
  • IIPH, Hyderabad
  • Technology Development partner
  • ZMQ technologies Pvt Ltd, Gurgaon

Brief
Sangath was awarded an international Stars in Global Health grant by Grand Challenges Canada for the innovative idea INFORM – a mobile health (mHealth) platform for ImproviNg Functional Outcomes foR children with iMpairments through community health workers in India

Objectives

  • To design a mobile-health (mHealth) platform so community health workers can deliver evidence-based strategies to children with neuro-developmental disorders to support activities of daily living
  • Scale up mHealth services to empower families of children with neuro-developmental disorders through community health workers

Overview
The team is currently standardising and restructuring a paper-based manual developed by MAITS (Multi-Agency International Training and Support), UK, to be transferred to the mHealth platform; INFORM. Periodic consultations with collaborators and consultants are being held. Mentor Dr Gauri Divan also conducted a sensitisation lecture for the technology partner team ZMQ in Gurgaon, Haryana.
      Software and programming of the assessment tool and algorithms to support the platform are being developed and the team is working on audio-visual scripts and materials.
      Studies have shown how most families of children with neuro-developmental disabilities such as cerebral palsy, autism and intellectual disabilities do not have access to evidence-based strategies to promote their development and address their impairments, making this a global health priority.
      The main outcome of the INFORM project is to disseminate evidence-based practices for children with neuro-developmental disabilities through mHealth technology. mHealth technology is a rapidly growing tool in low- and middle-income countries, and this project will empower non-specialist community health workers to deliver best practices to children with neuro-developmental disabilities at a relatively low cost and with assured quality which will be maintained by supervision.
      The project management committee has been meeting regularly at the Public Health Foundation of India. A CommCare application workshop in Mumbai helped get more insight into the use and working of mHealth technology.

 

INFORM NEWS

  • Vivek Vajaratkar gave an oral presentation of the INFORM platform developed at the International Developmental Pediatrics Congress held in Istanbul in December 2015 . The talk described the methods used to develop the content and the its evaluation for acceptability and feasibility for use by non-specialist health workers. The talk generated interest in the platform developed.