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Mobile phone-based alerts for pregnant women launched

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Kolkata,: A mobile phone-based alert system for pregnant women in rural areas was launched here on Monday to help them stay healthy till delivery.

Called ‘M-Health Service’, the service requires the would-be mothers to register via a cellphone. Periodic text messages will convey to them necessary treatment details to take care of issues that crop up during pregnancy.

Arati Basu Sengupta, veteran gynaecologist and former president of the Bengal Obstetric and Gynaecological Society, said: With the help of this mobile health service provider pregnant women can stay in touch with the experts. They will get updates regarding the guidance and schedule of vaccine.”

Reminders would be sent if a woman fails to take adequate steps as prescribed within the specified time. Details of the registered patient will be available online and the service will cease once data on the birthplace of the new born is provided.

Sengupta, however, raised questions on the last-mile coverage of the service to remote zones.

“Moreover, it’s the pregnant mother who has to take the measures so the success depends on their initiative. In addition, there are issues concerning radiation emitted from cell phones,” the physician added.

The service has been initiated by Manbhum Ananda Ashram Nityananda Trust.