Kenya’s Totohealth is launching in Tanzania to help mothers in Tanzania receive the best health information during pregnancy, during birth and post-birth for their own and their babies care.
Totohealth’s two-way SMS helpdesk enables parents to know what they need to do during birth, parents are able to ask and get responses to child and maternal health related queries from qualified child specialists, and incase of emergencies be reffered to link facilities in counties that they operate in.
On delivery Totohealth has a delivery kit (totopack) that contain three layers of essential items that a doctor, a mother and child would use during delivery as well as a childcare pack (totobox) that has 17 life-saving commodities for the first 90 days of a newborn’s life.
The Tanzania launch is in line with the startups expansion plans. In Kenya, Totohealth has launched in six counties of Nairobi, Machakos, Nandi, Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet and Garissa and as well in partnership with paying clients like Carolina for Kibera, Global One, Kidogo, DSW and now Shalom Hospital.
Led by Felix Kimaru the health innovation has in just one year, signed up 15,395 parents receiving life-saving content from Totohealth, and registered through more than 1,051 community health volunteers.
A parent is registered onto Totohealth through a community health volunteer (CHV) or through texting the word toto to a toll-free shortcode 20209. Registration is based on the trimester of pregnancy or how old a child is, the stage of pregnancy or the age of a child is important to enable a targeted and two-way correspondence with the 15,395 parents on the platform.
Every monday and Thursday at 9am parents receive timely and targeted health advice, the Monday message is on the health of the child while the Thursday message is on the health of the parents.
In the last 12 months, Totohealth has raised more than USD $ 140,000 dollars in equity investments and grants from various sources including Spark International, Indigo Trust,Spring Accelerator, mlab and two local investors- a sign to entrepreneurs that the market is taking note of local solutions for local problems and are willing to financial back great social ventures.
The problem Totohealth is solving is huge.
“It is unacceptable that about 800 women die from pregnancy- or childbirth-related complications around the world every day,” says Malele. “In sub-Saharan Africa, women’s risks are even greater with 1 in 38 risk of dying in pregnancy or childbirth, worse still everyday in Kenya 300 children and 20 women die from preventable conditions associated with pregnancy and childbirth.”
Malele adds that 1 million mothers give birth everyday in Kenya and half of them are most likely to give birth at home with no skilled supervision, Totohealth is in the forefront in drastically reducing child and maternal deaths especially in the 15 counties causing 98% of all child and maternal deaths.
Last week, Totohealth won the sead 2015 health hackathon on improving maternal and child health held in Nairobi. Totohealth’s Fonda Ruiter and Alice Mueni ensure parents receive timely and targeted content as well as promptly respond to queries raised through the helpdesk, Joseph Murgor is the company’s chief software engineer who ensures that the system runs without downtimes and Malele Ngalu ensures it gets the counties and other partners.