Mobile Technology and Boat Taxis to Enhance Vaccine Coverage
Paul Namwanja of the Community Health Centre, Busabala in Uganda will implement mobile technology for village health teams to monitor households and childhood vaccinations on remote islands in Uganda and to establish public-private partnerships with community health workers and boat owners to improve vaccine coverage. Vaccination rates on Ugandan islands are significantly lower than the national level because of unreliable transportation to access mainland healthcare centers; island residents rely on commercial fishing boats to travel and face long wait times for healthcare service. They will modify an existing mobile application for village health teams to create a registry of new and expectant mothers by recording household location and required vaccines. These data can then be shared with mainland health workers and used to facilitate access to a subsidized boat taxi service for travel to medical appointments. They will test their approach on six trial islands by providing the mobile phones and application along with training to health workers and recruiting boat drivers and evaluate its effect on vaccination coverage.