Adult hands using a maternal health app on a smart phone

What’s wrong with the evidence for mHealth?

There is good news and bad news about the evidence for mHealth interventions in low- and middle-income countries. The good news is there that is a lot of evidence from high-quality (counterfactual-based) studies about the effectiveness of mHealth interventions, that is, “a lot” compared to the overall evidence base for low- and middle-income countries. The bad news is that this body of evidence is not very useful for understanding the potential effectiveness of mHealth interventions at scale and over time. In this post, I present some analysis of the evidence base for mHealth interventions, and I argue that going forward, we need to rigorously evaluate the net impact of mHealth interventions in real program settings, at scale, over time and combined with cost-effectiveness analysis.

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