Using Mobile Technologies to prevent Vulnerable Mothers from COVID-19 in Rural Southwestern Uganda

  • Acronym: MobileMomCare
  • Effective start/end date: April 01st, 2021 May 31st, 2022
  • Funder: Federal German Ministry of Education and Research Grant number: 01DG21014
  • Type: Intevation Research


Overview. The current COVID-19 awareness campaigns and prevention messages used in Uganda may not be easily  accessible and understood by illiterate poor mothers due to lack of television sets where multimedia messages demonstrating COVID-19 prevention strategies (e.g. proper hand washing, coughing) are currently disseminated. Moreover, these messages are disseminated in English language, which illiterate women cannot understand. There is an urgent need to avail reliable preventive information to these otherwise hard-to-reach illiterate and vulnerable mothers. Also, COVID-19 pandemic causes new challenges to the vulnerable rural mothers and their babies—amidst the current lockdowns, and travel restrictions, mothers still need to access postnatal care such as HIV/AIDS prevention. Through a MatHealth study (01DG18004: PI on Uganda side: Musiimenta, MUST; PI on Germany side: Pinkwart, HU) funded by BMBF, our group has demonstrated that a mobile phone-based multimedia application can enable women overcome barriers that limit access to maternal health services.

The MMomCare project supports the prevention of COVID-19 among rural illiterate, poor, and vulnerable mothers in southwestern Uganda, using a mobile phone-based multimedia application—MobileMomCare application – that disseminates videos/audio for COVID-19 prevention (e.g. proper handwashing, social distancing), and information for preventing/coping with COVID-19-induced/aggravated challenges, in particular, domestic violence, and HIV/AIDS. The application also activates clinic appointment reminders, and facilitates electronic consultations. Using a mixed methods approach, we will evaluate the preliminary impact of the MobileMomCare project on COVID-19 prevention knowledge, risk perception, adoption of COVID-19 prevention practices among the participants of our MatHealth project. The effect of the intervention on preventing/coping with COVID-19-induced/ aggravated challenges i.e. domestic violence, and HIV/AIDS will also be assessed.

Grant number: 01DG21014


  • Dr. Angella Musiimenta PhD. Senior Lecturer and Deputy Dean Faculty of Computing and Informatics - Mbarara University of Science and Technology (PI).
  • Dr. Niels Pinkwart - Humboldt University Berlin Germany (PI).
  • Dr. Mugyenyi Godfrey. Faculty of Medicine - Mbarara University of Science and Technology (Co-Investigator)
  • Dr. Jane Katusiime PhD. Faculty of Computing and Informatics - Mbarara University of Science and Technology (Co-Investigator).