Malaysia, like other low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), faces an increasing burden of childhood injuries occurring in the home or its immediate environment. At the same time, widespread and growing ownership and use of mobile phones has created a promising avenue for delivery of health interventions at low cost.
We aim to harness the immense potential of mobile technologies to lessen the burden of child injuries. The overall goal of the JHU-IKU M-CHILD program is to strengthen mobile health capacity to assess risks and improve prevention of child injuries at home in Malaysia through an innovative model of sustainable capacity development.
Our specific aims are (1) to develop an mHealth tool for home risk assessment and prevention of child injuries, a key national priority in Malaysia, focusing on feasible, measureable in-home interventions. This tool will be used to map risks for injury to children <5 years, which will stimulate hazard reduction interventions through an innovative data-driven mhealth application (the MAP- CHILD app);(2) to pilot-test MAP-CHILD in Malaysia to evaluate data quality and user operability by families;and (3) to develop a core group of researchers focused on the use and integration of mHealth for research and training in public health at Institute for Public Health (IKU) in Malaysia through a short-term, structured, mHealth capacity-building training program for researchers from IKU that will include an innovative e-mentoring program;in-country training workshops at IKU;and online courses and webinars from JHU on priority topics in m-capacity. The JHU-IKU M-CHILD project is a novel application of mHealth in the area of injury prevention, grounded in scientific principles that hav been found effective through other modes of delivery, such as home visits. We will develop a simple, """"""""fun,"""""""" yet creative and rigorous mobile phone app that will prevent in-home risks for child injuries, thereby reducing the burden of injuries among children in Malaysia. The innovation's benefits will not be limited to children or to Malaysia;once developed, the app will be easily adaptable to other LMIC settings. The JHU-IKU M-CHILD program will also transform the mHealth environment at IKU and in Malaysia. Through a transformative approach, we will implement a capacity development model using m-capacity to conduct research around a nationally relevant issue while our two institutions collaborate to develop a locally relevant data registry and injury outcome tool (Aim 1). The registry will be implemented in one district to assess its feasibility and develop the capacity of the centers to evaluate and follow outcomes in risk reduction (Aim 2). We will use the interest at IKU in teaching and research on child injuries specifically, and public health in general, and at JHU in global and mobile health, to strengthen m-capacity expertise in one of the premier institutions in Malaysia (Aim 3). We envision that this program will lead to the future development of a program dedicated to the use of mHealth in global health research and training at IKU and Malaysia.
We propose to harness the immense potential of widely adopted mobile tools and technologies to lessen the burden of child injuries in LMICs by developing and piloting a mobile phone-based tool, the MAP-CHILD app, to assess risks and improve prevention of child injuries in the home, working in partnership with the Institute of Public Health in Malaysia (IKU) to develop a core group of researchers focused on the use and integration of mHealth for research and training. This novel application of mHealth approaches to a national injury prevention priority will follow a capacity development model, using mHealth to conduct research around a nationally relevant issue while our two institutions in the US and Malaysia collaborate to develop a locally relevant data registry and injury outcome tool, assess its feasibility, and develop capacity to evaluate and follow outcomes in risk reduction, in the process strengthening m-capacity expertise in one of the premier health research institutions in Malaysia. We envision that this program will lead to the future development of a program dedicated to the use of mHealth in global health research and training at IKU and Malaysia.