SMS Maama sends three types of easy-to-read automated text messages to women looking for more information about their pregnancies.

1) Informational texts

  • Knowledge related to:
    • Pregnancy
    • Birth
    • Postpartum period

2) ANTENATAL APPOINTMENT REMINDERS

  • Encouraging women to:
    • Attend scheduled appointments
    • Bring partners with to clinic

3) INTERACTIVE SCREENING TEXTS

  • YES/NO screening questions aimed to identify potential serious health complications
  • Linking women into care
  • Encouraging women to recognize signs/symptoms even if they themselves may not be experiencing such a symptom at that moment in time

Q. How is SMS Maama unique?

A. Each time a woman responds to an interactive YES/NO text message, she receives a small monetary incentive (pilot purposes: 1 maama point)*. If a woman responds to 1/2 of the YES/NO messages throughout her course of involvement in SMS Maama, she will earn enough to purchase a safe-birthing or "maama kit," which contains all of the vital and necessary supplies for safe delivery (valued at ~$7 USD). 

"Maama kits" are supposed to be free of charge for women in Uganda, but this is unfortunately, not often the reality. If a woman presents to a hospital for delivery, but does not have such a kit, she is often turned away.

SMS Maama is working to empower women with the opportunity to purchase such a kit so that they and their child may have a safe birthing experience.

A maama or safe-birthing kit. Maama kits contain all of the necessary items needed for a safe and healthy delivery that many hospitals in Uganda cannot often provide themselves (i.e. sterile plastic sheets, gloves, soap, cord ties, cotton, etc).

A maama or safe-birthing kit. Maama kits contain all of the necessary items needed for a safe and healthy delivery that many hospitals in Uganda cannot often provide themselves (i.e. sterile plastic sheets, gloves, soap, cord ties, cotton, etc).

*For purposes of the 2017 research pilot, SMS Maama is providing all mothers with a free maama kit at their 4th antenatal care appointment as compensation for their time. To test the utility of the "incentive system", women earn "maama points" each time they answer a YES/NO question as opposed to small monetary incentives. Women can then exchange points for items from our "Maama box," which contains small baby-care related items such as shampoo, lotion, rattles, onesies, etc.