The widespread use of mobile phones throughout low and middle income countries presents key opportunities to extend the reach and impact of health programs. Digital applications enhance proven interventions to address gaps in health systems. Mobile messages and audio-visual content can educate consumers about health services and products, and reinforce training of providers. Data services such as reporting platforms, dashboards to improve decision-making, and insurance registration and payment systems, support the scale-up of private sector service delivery models.
Digital health encompasses concepts of mhealth, ehealth, digital finance, and information and communications technologies (ICT). SHOPS Plus integrates cost effective digital solutions into project activities, contributing to the quality and accessibility of services for underserved and at-risk populations. Digital health platforms offer a particularly promising opportunity for engagement between the public and private sectors, making it easier to share data and partner on health activities.
SHOPS Plus digital health activities include:
- Data collection and management including integration with DHIS2
- Digital finance (mobile money for payments, savings, credit, and insurance)
- Provider training and supervision
- Consumer education and behavior change
- Training in use of social media
- Rigorous impact evaluations
- Sustainable business models
- Facilitation of public-private partnerships
- Digital health landscape assessments
Examples of our work
In Haiti, SHOPS Plus developed and deployed critical information via text message to encourage condom use and reduce the risk of Zika transmission. More than 7.5 million SMS were sent to low-income Haitians in Ouest and Port-au-Prince, generating thousands of requests for additional health information.
In Tanzania, SHOPS Plus increased enrollment of people living with HIV in an insurance scheme to finance their HIV care and treatment. Mobile-based registration, premium payments and claims processing simplified the process and led to rapid enrollment of more than 20,000 new beneficiaries.
In Nepal, SHOPS Plus is developing a mobile app for supervisors aimed at improving family planning counseling by service providers. By automating the audit process and generating actionable recommendations, supervisors will be better prepared to address gaps such as active listening skills to support client choice.