Posted by: Administrator | June 9, 2011

SCOSIT Meetup 7th June Follow Up

A section of the audience at the meeting

A section of the audience at the meeting

The meeting led by the current Chairman Kennedy Kirui opened with a word of prayer from Kennetg the former chairperson.  Kirui kicked off the meeting by thanking them audience for making it to the meeting. He then apologized on behalf of the M-ARV team who due to unavoidable circumstances were not able to make it to the meeting

The M-Chanjo team was then invited to make the seven presentation. This team is among the 25 finalists of the Pivot 25 Competition.

The presentation was led by Mercy Mugii with assistance from Joy Kendi both from M-Chanjo and computer science finalists. Serah Njambi and Kirui Kennedy form the other two students in the team. The presentation was then followed by a question and answer session. The M-Chanjo team comprises of four students from JKUAT and two former students.

M-chanjo is a mobile based system that seeks to reduce the rate of child mortality especially in the developing world. The system works by sending automated reminders via SMS to parents to keep then informed on any future immunization dates and appointments for their children.

In the year 2000, the United Nations set out to reduce child mortality by two-thirds by 2015 as part of the Millenium Development Goals. Currently, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) over 10.5 million children die each year before they reach the age of 5, of these over 1 million die due to preventable diseases such as Measles, Pneumonia and Polio, and most deaths occur in the developing world. M-chanjo sets out to ensure that the fourth MDG goal of reducing child mortality is achieved.

The key differentiators of this approach is the fact that it takes advantage the high availability of mobile phones in the developing world (500M in Africa alone) and the extremely low cost of SMS. The system will allow health officials to create and store the immunization records of a new born child, with every visit the officials can then update the child’s immunization schedule. Optionally, parents details and contact information can also be also be added and stored in a central secure server.

Mchanjo aims to not only save lives but also to provide government policy makers and social benefit organizations with invaluable data for long term planning of their operations. The system also provides a web front end of easier administration and for use by health institutions that have access to computers

The present members were called upon to  renew their membership by paying the normal semester fee of fifty shillings and the  new members were also encouraged to register to be part of the society by paying the requisite fee of a hundred shillings.

The meeting ended with a closing prayer from Liz Mukuhi.

Article by Elly Kibet

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