Over the past two years we have examined the impact of mobile technology among a sample of smallholder farmers and traders in Zimbabwe. One of our findings indicates the extent to which mobile phones have become so addictive in ways that undermine relationships and even potential income. If a poor farmer spends the equivalent of a goat to buy airtime monthly but cannot see the value of the information gained through calling or sms, it's difficult to conclude that mobile phones are beneficial. In most cases, those using mobile phones regularly have not moved out of poverty better than those
Evaluating the impact of information
Two University Dons/academics differed on the question of the causes of cancer, particularly whether cancer can be caused by 'evil spirits'?- one was categoric that there is no such causality whilst the other said there is!
So long as such ambivalence remains in the very place (university) that the public look to for answers to this type of critical questions, confusion shall continue to reign - the public will continue to delay their access to evidence proven health service by going to little researched and understood traditional medicine practitioners / herbalists etc.
In The Lancet Global Health, Sophie Sarrassat and colleagues report on the first cluster randomised controlled trial of a radio intervention to reduce child mortality. The study is exceptional in its design and ambition: a systematic review of 111 mass media interventions to improve child survival found that only 32 used moderate to strong evaluation designs and only one measured an actual health outcome.2This elegant Burkinabé trial bucks all trends.
Background: Media campaigns can potentially reach a large audience at relatively low cost but, to our knowledge, no randomised controlled trials have assessed their effect on a health outcome in a low-income country. We aimed to assess the effect of a radio campaign addressing family behaviours on all-cause post-neonatal under-5 child mortality in rural Burkina Faso.
Mobile phones have the potential to improve access to healthcare information and services in low-resourced settings. This study investigated the use of mobile phones among patients with chronic diseases, pregnant women, and health workers to enhance primary healthcare in rural South Africa. Qualitative research was undertaken in Mpumalanga in 2014. Semi structured in-depth interviews were conducted with 113 patients and 43 health workers from seven primary healthcare clinics and one district hospital. Data were thematically analysed.
PURPOSE: African medical schools are expanding, straining resources at tertiary health facilities. Decentralizing clinical training can alleviate this tension. This study assessed the impact of decentralized training and contribution of undergraduate medical students at health facilities.
In my work on cancer policy in Abia State of Nigeria, I find that policymakers rely more on local evidence. They are more inclined to reviewing evidence about 'here and now', rather than 'over there'. The case of systematic reviews becomes more important when considering potential policy options.
Online information seeking is a skill which some people, including patients, have acquired rather better than others.