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Leveraging high mobile phone penetration for timely and complete child immunization in Nepal

Child Immunizations Blog Post

August 09, 2017

Posted by: Alix Emden

Post authored by Samita Thapa, Communications Intern, and Parash Bhandari, Project Manager. Above, officer at Shree Birendra Hospital in Nepal.  

Vaccinations play a crucial role in reducing infant deaths, and are, therefore, a big priority for the Ministry of Health, Nepal. While 78% of children 12-23 months of age were fully vaccinated in Nepal as of 2016, there is a significant discrepancy among the 75 national districts. Nepal’s National Immunization Plan (2011-2016) recognizes that one of the country’s major challenges is a lack of reliable and real time vaccination data. With the launching of one of our most recent projects, we emphasize the use of e-health to address this challenge.

Today, there are almost 30 million mobile phone subscriptions in Nepal. With a population of around 28 million, that’s a mobile phone penetration of above 100%. Leveraging this easily accessible technology, Medic Mobile partnered with Shree Birendra Hospital, UNICEF, and Golden Community on a controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of a mobile-based vaccination outcome reporting and reminder system.

Through our partnership, we trained vaccinators at Shree Birendra Hospital to register babies within the first month after birth using the Medic Mobile App. Our web-based app generates a calendar for each registered infant and sends parents reminders about upcoming vaccinations for their child. The vaccination outcome of every child enrolled in the project will be tracked for 12 months to ensure successful completion of vaccinations for the child’s first year of life.

We deployed this project on July 19, 2017. We are excited about this latest partnership and are looking forward to making it a success!

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