(This May 17 story has been refiled to right firm identify in paragraphs three,7.)
By Rina Chandran
MUMBAI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A high-tech bangle that alerts pregnant women to poisonous fumes and issues audio tips guarantees to increase maternal health in South Asia, as sensible units ship ever extra providers to distant communities.
The colourful, light-weight bangle additionally bypasses phone-owning males – feeding info immediately to expectant moms – and is constructed to stand up to the trials of village life.
“In rural areas, mobile connectivity – and mobile access for women – is an issue, as phones are controlled by men,” stated Pavel Hoq, chief working officer at Grameen Intel Social Business, which developed the brand new gadget.
“While we had also developed mobile apps for maternal health, we realized a wearable device solely for women, something she would likely wear all the time, would be better to connect with women in rural areas,” he informed the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
Made of sturdy plastic, the bangle is water resistant and has a long-lasting battery that doesn’t require charging all through the period of a pregnancy.
Nor does it not want an web connection to work.
Coel, or carbon monoxide publicity limiter, was created by Grameen Intel Social Business Ltd., a three way partnership of Intel Corporation, and Bangladesh non-profit Grameen Trust.
The gadget could be recharged and reused many occasions, Hoq stated.
It will be a part of a lady’s common array of bracelets, with most married women in South Asia sporting bangles product of glass, plastic or gold. The ornamental end differentiates the bangle from many different wrist-worn health units or sensible watches.
Coel, which is designed to stand up to the tough and tumble of every day chores, delivers two wellness messages every week within the native language, together with what to eat and when to see the physician.
An alarm additionally sounds if excessive ranges of carbon monoxide fumes are generated when cooking with firewood, charcoal or dung, warning the wearer to transfer away.
Every day, about 830 women worldwide die from pregnancy or childbirth-related problems, in accordance to the World Health Organization. Nearly a 3rd of those deaths are in South Asia.
Maternal mortality is larger amongst women dwelling in rural areas and poorer communities, the place entry to healthcare is usually forbidden or curtailed due to a scarcity of feminine medics.
In Bangladesh, the place greater than 70 % of infants are born at residence, about 5,000 maternal deaths and almost 77,000 neonatal deaths are reported yearly, in accordance to WHO.
In neighboring India, the place Coel has been examined in Uttar Pradesh – among the many poorest states within the nation – maternal and neonatal deaths are almost 10 occasions larger.
At the identical time, wearable units together with sensible watches, footwear and glasses, are more and more used for distant healthcare, comparable to to monitor a affected person’s ldl cholesterol or insulin ranges.
It is a rising market: about 2.5 million such wearable units have been bought in India final yr, most priced beneath $50, in accordance to analysis agency International Data Corporation.
Coel, which can be priced initially at about $12-$15, can be bought in India and Bangladesh first, then in Nepal, stated Hoq.
“Easy access to knowledge is crucial in these countries, particularly for first-time mothers,” he stated.
“We want this device to be a tool of empowerment for women.”
(Reporting by Rina Chandran @rinachandran, Editing by Lyndsay Griffiths. Please credit score the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian information, women’s rights, trafficking, property rights, local weather change and resilience. Visit information.belief.org to see extra tales.)