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New Latina moms get help with caring for babies via their cell phones

LatinaLista — According to the U.S. Census, there were 4.3 million births registered in the United States in 2007 — 445,045 were to teens 15 to 19.

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These teen mothers, as well as, those moms in their 20s and 30s are part of the generation that was raised with seeing technology as a playmate than as a challenge to learn. That’s why a service, and the nation’s largest free mobile health initiative, by the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition (HMHB), Text4Baby, is such a perfect match for today’s moms-to-be and new mothers.

Text4Baby sends useful timely health information, in either English or Spanish, via cell phones to pregnant moms and new moms. The messages are delivered on a weekly basis and are timed with either the mom’s due date or their baby’s date of birth.

The texts provide reminders and vital information about immunizations, nutrition, oral health and child development as well as toll-free numbers for health services.

The program’s mission is to reach low-income women or those women who don’t have convenient access to medical services. Benefiting from a new donation from Johnson & Johnson, the creators of the service have declared a new goal — to reach one million mothers.

There are plans to expand the service by offering more interactive features like quizzes and opportunities for more user feedback.

“Text4baby is filling a void in the nation’s public health system in communicating with low-income women and new mothers, who have limited access to critical obstetric and pediatric information and care,” said Judy Meehan, CEO of the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition.

“Having worked in mobile health for a decade, it is wonderful to see text4baby succeeding at such scale and considering the potential that mobile phones have to help people live healthier lives,” said Paul Meyer, Chairman & President, Voxiva, Inc. “Text4baby is tapping into the vast power of mobile to provide an invaluable benefit to moms and is already serving as a model for large scale mobile health information services around the world.”

Parents can sign up for the free service by texting either baby or bebe (for Spanish text messages) to 511411.


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