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Cost analysis of implementing mHealth intervention for maternal, newborn & child health care through community health workers: assessment of ReMIND program in Uttar Pradesh, India



Cost analysis of implementing mHealth intervention for maternal, newborn & child health care through community health workers: assessment of ReMIND program in Uttar Pradesh, India



Bmc Pregnancy and Childbirth 18(1): 390



The main intervention under ReMiND program consisted of a mobile health application which was used by community health volunteers, called ASHAs, for counselling pregnant women and nursing mothers. This program was implemented in two rural blocks in Uttar Pradesh state of India with an overall aim to increase quality of health care, thereby increasing utilization of maternal & child health services. The aim of the study was to assess annual & unit cost of ReMiND program and its scale up in UP state. Economic costing was done from the health system and patient's perspectives. All resources used during designing & planning phase i.e., development of application; and implementation of the intervention, were quantified and valued. Capital costs were annualised, after assessing their average number of years for which a product could be used and accounting for its depreciation. Shared or joint costs were apportioned for the time value a resource was utilized under intervention. Annual cost of implementing ReMiND in two blocks of UP along and unit cost per pregnant woman were estimated. Scale-up cost for implementing the intervention in entire state was calculated under two scenarios - first, if no extra human resource were employed; and second, if the state government adopted the same pattern of human resource as employed under this program. The annual cost for rolling out ReMiND in two blocks of district Kaushambi was INR 12.1 million (US $ 191,894). The annualised start-up cost constituted 9% of overall cost while rest of cost was attributed to implementation of the intervention. The health system program costs in ReMiND were estimated to be INR 31.4 (US $ 0.49) per capita per year and INR 1294 (US $ 20.5) per registered women. The per capita incremental cost of scale up of intervention in UP state was estimated to be INR 4.39 (US $ 0.07) when no additional supervisory staffs were added. The cost of scale up of ReMiND in Uttar Pradesh is 6% of annual budget for 'reproductive and child health' line item under state budget, and hence appears to be financially sustainable.

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Accession: 065741717

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PMID: 30285669

DOI: 10.1186/s12884-018-2019-3


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